Pseudolarix amabilis is a species of conifer in the Pinaceae, or pine, family. It is native to southern and eastern China. The stem bark near the root of the tree has been used as a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) remedy to kill parasites and relieve itching for thousands of years. Research into the tree's actual medicinal uses is still in its infancy, but looks promising.
This tree is commonly known as golden larch, false larch, and golden pine. Pseudolarix amabilis grows best in U.S. Department of Agriculture Hardiness Zones 4-8. It prefers soil with a pH level of 6.1 to 7.5, or mildly acidic to neutral. The tree thrives in full sunlight.
In TCM, Pseudolarix amabilis is one of the 50 fundamental medicinal herbs. It is used in Chinese herbology to kill the mites responsible for scabies and the yeast responsible for tinea. Pseudolarix amabilis may relieve the itching associated with these conditions. To use this herb as a treatment, TCM practitioners recommend mixing the powdered bark with vinegar, wine, or water and applying topically to the rash.
Along with other herbs, Yin-Care, an over-the-counter TCM remedy containing Pseudolarix amabilis, has many positive online reviews about its curative powers. Applied topically, it is reported to effectively treat eczema, vaginitis, rash, poison ivy, burns, and cold sores. It is also said to treat shingles, acne, fungal foot infections, and hemorrhoids equally well.
The Pseudolarix amabilis tree, like other plants, fungi, and bacteria, contain polysaccharides known as arabinogalactans. Arabinogalactans are rich in fiber and have been approved for use in food by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Some clinical studies on arabinogalactans have indicated that these polysaccharides may enhance immune function. More research is necessary to validate these results. The only side effect appears to be bloating and flatulence in a small number of people.
Early research focusing on Pseudolarix acid B looks promising. This acid has been shown to inhibit angiogenesis, or the development of blood vessels, in tumors. Additional research must be done to validate these findings and to determine how best to use acid B to better human health.
Prepared Pseudolarix amabilis may be purchased at local health food stores, markets, or online. It is available as a flower essence, homeopathic remedy, extract, tea, pill, and powder. No serious side effects have been reported; anyone planning to use this herb, however, may want to speak with an informed healthcare professional first. This is particularly recommended for pregnant or nursing women.