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  • Writer's pictureAlex Tamayo Wolf

Permaculture Landscaping: Schisandra Berry (Schisandra chinensis)

Permaculture Landscaping: Schisandra Berry (Schisandra chinensis)

We installed Schisandra at two permaculture sites this week, trellising the specimens on a fence. Personally, I love climbers, and if I find a suitable fence or wall, I’ll grow vertically on it to extend its function. Schisandra, native to East Asia, is a hardy deciduous climber that can tolerate shade and grows in a variety of soils. Fitting the profile of a quintessential permaculture species, meaning multi-functional, we are growing it for food, “medicine”, and shade. Its berries, reputedly, possess all five basic flavors in Chinese herbal medicine: salty, sweet, sour, pungent (spicy), and bitter. In traditional Chinese medicine it is used as a remedy for many ailments: to resist infections, increase skin health, and combat insomnia, coughing, and thirst. A good data-point for its medicinal properties can be found here. Information about propagation can be found here. Diversity is resilience, and we are excited to diversify with this lesser known species.

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