Although no specific mention of toxicity has been found for this species, it belongs to a family that contains many species that are mildly toxic and so it is wise to treat this plant with some caution.
There are no edible uses listed for Coptis japonica.
Can be grown as a ground cover plant in the peat garden
There are no material uses listed for Coptis japonica.
The root is a pungent, very bitter, cooling herb that controls bacterial and viral infections, relaxes spasms, lowers fevers and stimulates the circulation
. It is locally analgesic and anaesthetic
and is also anti-inflammatory and stomachic. It is used in the treatment of intestinal catarrh
, dysentery, enteritis, high fevers, inflamed mouth and tongue, conjunctivitis etc
The root is harvested in the autumn and can be used fresh or dried
Seed - best sown in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe in an ericaceous compost
. Seal the pot in a polythene bag until germination takes place, which is usually within 1 - 6 months at 10°c
. Stored seed should be sown as early in the year as possible. Four weeks cold stratification may be beneficial
. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow on in a shady part of the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out in mid-autumn or in spring.
Division in spring
Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Coptis japonica. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.
Requires a light moist humus-rich slightly acidic soil with a northerly aspect or light shade
Problems, pests & diseases
Associations & Interactions
There are no interactions listed for Coptis japonica. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.
Polycultures & Guilds
There are no polycultures listed which include Coptis japonica.
This table shows all the data stored for this plant.
Material uses & Functions
Native Climate Zones
Adapted Climate Zones
Native Geographical Range
Root Zone Tendancy
? 1.01.11.21.31.4 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
? 2.02.12.22.32.4 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
? 3.03.1 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
? 4.04.1 Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable ISBN 0094579202 (1974-00-00)
? 5.05.1 Kariyone. T. Atlas of Medicinal Plants. ()
? 6.06.16.2 Bird. R. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 4. Thompson and Morgan. (1990-00-00)
? F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
? Ohwi. G. Flora of Japan. (English translation) Smithsonian Institution (1965-00-00)