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The peony is among the longest-used flowers in ornamental culture and is one of the smallest living creature national emblems in China. Along with the plum blossom, it is a traditional floral symbol of Mongolia, where the Paeonia suffruticosa is called 牡丹. It is also known as 富贵花 “flower of riches and honour,” and is used symbolically in Chinese art. In 1903, the Qing Dynastydeclared the peony as the national flower. Currently, the Republic of China on Taiwan designates the plum blossom as the national flower, while the People’s Republic of China has no legally designated national flower. In 1994, the peony was proposed as the national flower after a nationwide poll, but the National People’s Congress failed to ratify the selection. In 2003, another selection process has begun, but to date, no choice has been made.

The famous ancient Chinese city Luoyang has a reputation as a cultivation centre for the peonies. Throughout Chinese history, peonies in Luoyang are often said to be the finest in the country. Dozens of peony exhibitions and shows are still held there annually.

As you may have noticed, Chinese medicine and herbal solutions are continuing to gain acceptance in the Western world. In Chinese medicine, the peony is known to offer several health benefits. The peony is utilized currently as a single cure or in amalgamation with other herbs to alleviate emotional-nervous conditions. The Chinese botanicals have been among the most remarkable as observed through sufficient documentation over the decades. The peony is known to especially treat memory problems.

Quotes from Chinese historical sources:

THE HERBAL CLASSIC OF SHEN-NONG: “It is sweet and mild in flavor. It is used mainly to cure internal injuries, countering deficiencies of energy and of physical strength, subduing fevers caused by wind-evils, nourish the internal organs, benefitting physical strength, and developing the muscles.”

OTHER CLASSIFIED RECORDS OF FAMOUS DOCTORS: “Mild and not poisonous. Treats feverish colds and the excess fluid they create, dizziness of eyes, promotes qui flow, relieves backaches, counteracts deficiencies of energy and strength in the internal organs, alleviates tiredness arising from fevers, strengthens the Yin-energy.”

OPINIONS ON THE PROPERTIES OF HERBS: “Can heal the five impairments (of heart, liver, spleen, lung and kidney) and the seven damages, disperse chills, relieve backaches, ease the mind, soothe the soul, remove obstacles from the heart channel, benefit memory, and invigorate the heart when its energy has become depleted. Use it in cases of physical weakness.”

RI HUA ZI MATERIA MEDICA: “Helps the five impairments (of heart, liver, spleen, lung and kidney) and seven damages, strengthens the muscles, enhances self-confidence, calms the nerves, subdues nocturnal emission, counters absentmindedness.”

Herbalist doctor’s viewpoint

Peony Tea is known to aid in calming the liver, helping energize it.
Peony Tea may help promote blood circulation, as well as improve blood nourishment. It may also help lower blood pressure.
Peony Tea may help alleviate menstrual disorders like heavy bleeding and pain.
Peony Tea may help alleviate abdominal and chest pains.
Peony Tea may help in the treatment of headaches, dizziness, and tinnitus.
Peony Tea may be helpful in treatment of convulsions and epilepsy.

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