Ampelopsis Quinquefolia. American Ivy, Woodbine, Virginia Creeper, False Grape.
Description: Natural Order, Vitaceae. This shrubby vine is common throughout the United States in woody thickets, mounting the highest trees with its root-like tendrils. It is cultivated for the beautiful covering it makes when it climbs the sides of the houses. Leaves quinate, each leaflet being oblong, two to four inches in length, and dark green; flowers small, greenish; berries small, dark blue, sour, ripe in October.
Properties and Uses: The bark and twigs are used. They are mildly stimulating to the mucous membranes and secreting organs, and slightly astringent–a combination of qualities which has led the plant to be classed as alterant and tonic. It improves the vigor of the lungs, promotes expectoration moderately, and slowly increases the action of the skin. By these influences, it becomes of service in chronic coughs and bronchitis, in the early stages of scrofulous phthisis, and in mild cutaneous affections. Combined with more vigorous alterants, it gives a tone to the system which is often valuable. The article probably deserves more notice than it has yet received.
Pharmaceutical Preparations: I. Decoction. Digest two ounces of the bark in a quart of water, and reduce it to a pint. Dose, a fluid ounce four or six times a day. It may be combined with ordinary alterants at pleasure in the form of sirup.
The Physiomedical Dispensatory, 1869, was written by William Cook, M.D.
It was scanned by Paul Bergner at http://medherb.com