Kinnikinnick - Arctostaphylos uva-ursi


Family: Ericaceae (Heath Family)

[IFBC-E-flora]

 

2013 [E-flora]

Synonyms A. officinalis. Arbutus uva-ursi. Uva-ursi procumbens. Uva-ursi uva-ursi. [PFAF].

  • Arctostaphylos adenotricha (Fernald & J.F. Macbr.) A. Löve & D. Löve & Kapoor [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos nevadensis var. coloradensis (Rollins) Harrington [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. adenotricha (Fernald & J.F. Macbr.) Calder & Roy L. Taylor [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. coactilis (Fernald & J.F. Macbr.) A. Löve & D. Löve [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. coloradensis (Rollins) J.B. Roof [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. longipilosa Packer & Denford [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. monoensis J.B. Roof [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. myrtifolia (Parry) J.B. Roof [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. stipitata Packer & Denford [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. uva-ursi [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. adenotricha Fernald & J.F. Macbr. [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. coactilis Fernald & J.F. Macbr. [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. leobreweri J.B. Roof [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. marinensis J.B. Roof [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. pacifica Hultén [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. saxicola J.B. Roof [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. stipitata (Packer & Denford) Dorn [E-flora]
  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi var. suborbiculata W. Knight [E-flora]
  • Uva-Ursi uva-ursi (L.) Britton [E-flora]

Identification

"Arctostaphylos uva-ursi is an evergreen Shrub growing to 0.1 m (0ft 4in) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 4 and is not frost tender. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Apr to July, and the seeds ripen from Jul to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, self.The plant is self-fertile."
"Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soils."
"It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil."[PFAF]

Status: Native [E-flora]
General: Prostrate shrub with somewhat stoloniferous rooting stems, sometimes forming mats several meters wide; bark reddish to brownish, peeling off; stems ascending at the tip, 5-15 cm tall, minutely hairy, sometimes glandular. [IFBC-E-flora]
Leaves: Alternate, evergreen, leathery, egg- to spoon-shaped, 1-3 cm long, 0.3-1.2 cm wide, rounded at tip, rarely pointed, narrowed basally, entire, glabrous to minutely hairy especially on the margins and midrib, dark green above, paler below; stalks 2-5 mm long. [IFBC-E-flora]
Flowers: Several in few-flowered terminal clusters; flower stalks 2-5 mm long, straight or curved, borne in the axils of hairy bracts; corollas pinkish-white, urn-shaped, 4-6 mm long, 5-lobed; calyces 1-1.5 mm long. [IFBC-E-flora]
Fruits: Berries, bright red, 5-10 mm wide. [IFBC-E-flora]
Notes:
In 1974, Packer and Denford reviewed the classification of infraspecific taxa, found it to be inadequate, and proposed that four subspecies and two varieties be recognized. Two of the subspecies were new taxa, not previously described. The taxa were based on the type of hairiness found on the young branches and stalks, chromosome numbers, and phenolics. All four subspecies occur in BC, but are not geographically distinct. We have, therefore, decided not to recognize these taxa until further work is done on the taxonomy and distribution of these entities in BC. [IFBC-E-flora]
USDA Flower Colour: Purple
USDA Blooming Period: Late Spring
USDA Fruit/Seed characteristics:


Habitat / Range
Dry forests and exposed, often rocky, sites in the lowland to lower alpine zones; common throughout BC; circumboreal, N to AK, E to NF and S to N CA, NM, MN, and VA; Eurasia. [IFBC-E-flora]

Ecological Indicator Information
A shade-tolerant/intolerant, submontane to subalpine, circumpolar evergreen shrub (transcontinental in North America). Occurs on very dry to moderately dry, nitrogen­ poor soils (Mor humus forms) within boreal, temperate, and cool mesothermal climates; its occurrence increases with increasing continentality. Common in open-canopy, young­seral lodgepole pine forests on shallow soils, soils on rock outcrops and strongly drained coarse-skeletal soils on water­shedding sites. Often associ­ated with Gaultheria shallon, Pleurozium schreberi, and lichens. Characteristic of moisture-deficient sites. (IPBC)[E-flora]


Introducton
"Kinnikinnick is a widespread circumpolar submontane to subalpine shrub species (Klinka et al. 1989). In North America, it is found from California north to Alaska, across Canada and the northern US, and throughout the Rocky Mountains from Canada to New Mexico (Crane 1991). In British Columbia, it is found across the province in "dry forests and exposed, often rocky, sites in the lowland to lower alpine zones" (Douglas et al. 1999). It is frequently a dominant understory species in open pine forests where it grows best in high light situations (but will sometimes tolerate shade) (Crane 1999). Klinka et al. (1998) indicate that in coastal BC it is "common in open-canopy, young, ­seral lodgepole pine forests on shallow soils, soils on rock outcrops and strongly drained coarse-skeletal soils on water­shedding sites". It is a fire-tolerant species (short fire cycles, low fuel buildup) and may be a "seedbanking species with fire resistant seed" (Crane 1999)." [E-flora]

"This common BC species is an evergreen prostrate shrub species with leathery dark green leaves that produces trailing stems and can form broad mats. Flowers are pink and bell-shaped; fruits are bright red 'berries' (drupes). Roots on dry sites are reported up to 181 cm (Crane 1991). It is clonal and, although seedlings are produced, reproduction is primarily asexual (Crane 1991)." [E-flora]


Hazards

Herbal Medications says that A. uva-ursi is ". . . relatively safe, and no symptoms are expected in quantities generally available." Taken in large or frequent quantities, however, it can cause gastrointestinal upset, nausea, and central nervous system depression. For chronic urinary and kidney problems, A. uva-ursi is safest blended with soothing, demulcent herbs such as Iceland moss and comfrey. [Schofield] "No health hazards are known in conjunction with the proper administration of designated therapeutic dosages. Individuals with gastric sensitivity may experience nausea and vomiting following intake of preparations made from the drug due to its high tannin content." [PDR]
Be aware that internal consumption of A. uva-ursi tea often results in the urine becoming alkaline and bright green; the urinary antiseptic hydroquinolone is the cause of this harmless reaction. [Schofield]

"Contraindications, Interactions, and Side Effects (Bearberry) — Class 2b, 2d. Contraindicated in kidney disorders, irritated digestive conditions, acidic urine; not for prolonged used (AHP; AEH; WAM). Hepatosis, nausea, nephrosis, stomachache, vomiting. Use no more than 1 week, unless otherwise directed by physician. Not recommended for children, lactating, pregnant, or nephritic patients (AHP; PH2; SKY). Canadians discourage bearberry as a nonmedicinal ingredient for oral use (Michols, 1995). Do not take other urine acidifiers, which could lessen antisepsis (KOM). One gram of the cytotoxic hydroquinone, equivalent to 6–20 g plant material, totally extracted (I presume) has caused collapse, convulsions, cyanosis, delirium, nausea, shortness of breath, tinnitus, and vomiting. Five grams has proved fatal. Because of high tannin content, prolonged use of uvaursi may cause chronic liver impairment. Since large doses are reportedly oxytocic, and in view of hydroquinone’s toxicity, “the use of uva-ursi during pregnancy and lactation is best avoided,” but in the last paragraph on page 259, the hydroquinone concentrations “provided by ingestion of therapeutic doses of uva-ursi are not thought to represent a risk to human health” (CAN)." [HMH Duke]


Edible Uses

Other Uses

Smoking Mixture: Commonly used. Generally toasted over a fire or in the oven. [Turner, Kuhnlein] Smoked as a "narcotic" by Kwakiutl Indians. [Pharmacotheon] Harvested year-round.[Schofield] The dried leaves have been used for smoking as an alternative to tobacco[238]. One report says that it is unclear whether this was for medicinal purposes or for the intoxicated state it could produce[192], whilst another says that the leaves were smoked to treat headaches and also as a narcotic[257]. [PFAF]
A report of a drunken spree produced by inhaling the smoke of kinnikinnick blended with bunchberry and salal leaves.[Schofield] The evergreen leaves have long been utilized as a substitute for tobacco, often used mixed with it. A smoker deprived of his favorite "weed" could gather the leaves, dry and toast them, and could surely use them at least in moderation for smoking. [Harrington]
The leaves are harvested at any time of the year, roasted beside a fire or over a stove until crisp and brown, then pulverized and smoked alone in a pipe or mixed with real tobacco. Some people who have tried it have found its effects very mild, but others say it can make one sleepy and dizzy if too much smoke is inhaled. [Coffee]
An intoxication similar to opium. The dried leaves are used as a tobacco substitute. The term kinnikinnick can also refer to other plants and to mixtures of these plants. [EncyHMED]
Reports: To me, there isn't a lot of flavor, though I have heard that the leaves need to be slightly fermented to truly bring out the flavor and aroma of this smoke. It does smoke well, and so I enjoy adding it to my non-nicotine smoking mixes. [Nyerges] Reagan (190, 191, 193), mentioned that several Indian tribes smoked the leaves and the general effect was an intoxication due to the narcotic content. Kephart (140) stated that the leaves were milder in summer than in winter. [Harrington]
(Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) Dried, the leaves would be smoked by the American Indians as a substitute for tobacco (Sanford); the Keres Indians seem to have mixed them with tobacco in the ordinary way (L A White), while the Chippewa claimed they smoked it “to attract game” (Densmore). The North-west coast Indians also used the leaves for the smoking substance kinnikinnick (Enboden. 1979), which is an Algonquin word meaning “that which is mixed”, usually tobacco (Johnston).[DPL Watts]
Potawatomi - These leaves, dried and powdered, they likewise mix with their tobacco; and as said before, smoke it only during the summer.” [HuronSmith Zuni]
The Kwakiutl smoked the leaves of some type of wild plant, possibly of this species, before tobacco was introduced by the white man (Cranmer, 1969). Other Northwest Coast Indian groups smoked these leaves, which are apparently slightly narcotic (Gunther, 1945). The dry mealy berries may have been eaten, as they were by other Indian groups.[Turner&Bell2]

Medicinal Uses

"Bearberry was commonly used by many native North American Indian tribes to treat a wide range of complaints and has also been used in conventional herbal medicine for hundreds of years, it is one of the best natural urinary antiseptics[254]. The leaves contain hydroquinones and are strongly antibacterial, especially against certain organisms associated with urinary infections[238]. The plant should be used with caution, however, because hydroquinones are also toxic[222]." [PFAF]
The plant has been widely used in traditional medicine throughout Europe for antiseptic and astringent properties of the glycosides arbutin and metilarbutin that are located primarily in the leaves (3,13).[SWHAUU]


Medicinal


BEARBERRY (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng.) + [HMH Duke]

Indications (Bearberry) —

Backache (1; CRC; DEM);

Bacteria (1; APA; FAD; PIP; PH2);

Bleeding (1; BGB; CRC; FAD); Blennorrhea (1; CRC); Boil (f; DEM); Bronchosis (f; APA; CRC; FAD); Burn (f; DEM); Cancer (1; CRC; JLH); Candida (1; BGB); Canker (f; DEM); Catarrh (f; CAN; MAB); Childbirth (f; CRC); Cholecystosis (1; MAB); Cold (f; DEM); Conjunctivosis (f; DEM); Constipation (f; DEM); Cough (1; MAB); Cystosis (1; APA; FAD; WAM); Dandruff (f; DEM); Dermatosis (1; WAM); Diabetes (f; CRC; MAB); Diarrhea (1; APA; FAD; WAM); Dropsy (f; BGB); Dysentery (f; CRC; MAB); Dysmenorrhea (1; CRC); Dysuria (1; CAN; CRC; MAB); Enuresis (f; MAB; PED; WAM); Fever (1; CRC); Fracture (f; DEM); Fungus (1; BGB); Gallstone (1; CRC); Gingivosis (f; DEM); Gleet (f; CRC); Gonorrhea (f; FAD; MAB); Gout (1; CRC); Hematuria (f; BGB; MAB); Hemorrhoid (1; CRC; WAM); Hepatosis (1; CAN; CRC); Hyperpigmentation (f; MAB); Incontinence (1; CRC); Infection (1; APA; BGB; FAD; PIP); Inflammation (1; APA; BGB; CAN; MAB; PH2; SHT); Itch (1; WAM); Kidney Stone (1; APA; CRC; X7860196); Leukorrhea (1; MAB); Lithuria (f; CAN); Menorrhagia (1; CRC; MAB); Miscarriage (f; DEM); Mycosis (1; BGB); Nephrosis (1; APA; FAD; MAB; PED); Obesity (f; APA); Ophthalmia (f; DEM); Otosis (f; DEM); Pain (1; DEM); Pancreatosis (1; CRC); Pneumonia (1; BGB); Prostatosis (1; MAB; PED); Pyelitis (1; CAN; CRC; PNC); Pyelonephrosis (1; MAB); Rheumatism (1; CRC); Splenosis (1; CRC); Sprain (f; DEM); Stone (1; CRC; FAD; FNF; PH2; SHT); Strangury (f; MAB); Streptococcus (1; FNF); Swelling (1; CAN; MAB); Thirst (f; DEM); Tuberculosis (f; CRC); Ulcer (1; CRC); Urethrosis (2; APA; KOM; PNC); Uterosis (f; BGB); UTI (2; APA; PHR; PH2; SHT); Water retention (1; APA; CAN; FAD; PH2); VD (1; MAB); Yeast (1; BGB; FNF).


Commercially Grown Herbal Medicine: The leaves are grown commercially in Spain and to a lesser extent in Canada and the United States for use in medicine as a diuretic and astringent. The medicine is marketed under the name of Uva Ursi or Bearberry. [Coffee]


Phytochemicals

The chief medicinal principle of kinnikinnick tea is a glycoside known as arbutin, found in many members of the heather family. [Coffee] Uva-ursi contains ten percent arbutin and substantial ericolin, substances that hydrolize in stomach fluids to form the urinary antiseptics, hydroquinolone and methylhydroquinone.[Schofield]

Folium Uvae Ursi; (consists of the dried leaves of A. uva-ursi)
The major constituent is arbutin (5–15%). Related hydroquinone derivatives present include hydroquinone and methylarbutin (up to 4%). Gallic acid is the major phenolic carboxylic acid present, together with galloyl arbutin and up to 20% of gallotannins, flavonoids and triterpenes, mainly ursolic acid and uvaol (4, 10–12). [WHO]

  • ALLANTOIN Plant: DUKE1992A
  • ALPHA-AMYRIN Plant: DUKE1992A
  • ALUMINUM Leaf 719 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • ARBUTIN Leaf 50,000 - 120,000 ppm DUKE1992A
  • ASCORBIC-ACID Leaf 191 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • ASH Leaf 50,000 ppm; DUKE1992A Seed 6,000 - 33,000 ppm DUKE1992A
  • BETA-CAROTENE Leaf 172 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • BETA-SITOSTEROL Plant: DUKE1992A
  • BETULINIC-ACID Plant: DUKE1992A Root: JAD
  • CALCIUM Leaf 10,900 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • CARBOHYDRATES Leaf 814,000 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • CHROMIUM Leaf 12 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • CITRIC-ACID Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • COBALT Leaf 17 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • ELLAGIC-ACID Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • FAT Leaf 26,000 ppm; DUKE1992A Seed 20,000 - 500,000 ppm DUKE1992A
  • FIBER Leaf 121,000 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • FORMIC-ACID Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • GALLIC-ACID Plant: DUKE1992A
  • GALLOTANNINS Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • HEXA-O-GALLOYL-BETA-D-GLUCOSE Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • HYDROQUINONE-GLYCOSIDES Leaf 50,000 - 180,000 ppm DUKE1992A
  • HYDROQUINONES Leaf 3,000 - 5,000 ppm DUKE1992A
  • HYPERIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • IRON Leaf 1,050 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • ISOQUERCITRIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • KILOCALORIES Leaf 2,710 /kg; DUKE1992A
  • LUPEOL Plant: DUKE1992A
  • MAGNESIUM Leaf 1,210 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • MALIC-ACID Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • MANGANESE Leaf 165 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • METHYL-ARBUTIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • MONOTROPEIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • MYRICETIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • NIACIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • O-PROTOCATECHUIC-ACID Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • OLEANOLIC-ACID Plant: DUKE1992A
  • PENTA-O-GALLOYL-BETA-D-GLUCOSE Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • PHOSPHORUS Leaf 370 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • POTASSIUM Leaf 3,830 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • PROTEIN Leaf 111,000 ppm; DUKE1992A Seed 25,000 - 256,000 ppm DUKE1992A
  • QUERCETIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • QUERCITRIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • QUINIC-ACID Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • RIBOFLAVIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • SELENIUM Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • SILICON Leaf 70 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • SODIUM Leaf 60 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • TANNIN Plant 60,000 - 200,000 ppm DUKE1992A
  • TARAXASTEROL Plant: DUKE1992A
  • THIAMIN Leaf 1 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • TIN Leaf: DUKE1992A
  • UNEDOSIDE Root: DUKE1992A
  • URSOLIC-ACID Leaf 4,000 - 7,500 ppm DUKE1992A
  • UVAOL Plant: DUKE1992A
  • WATER Leaf 884,000 ppm; DUKE1992A
  • ZINC Leaf: DUKE1992A

ppm = parts per million
tr = trace
[Duke]

The use of arbutin and hydroquinone as skin-whitening agents has been investigated. [HMI Stockey]

Constituents of Essential Oils
"GC and GC/MS analyses of the essential oils extracted from Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and Vaccinium vitis-idaea leaves enabled the identification of 338 different constituents (243 in A. uva-ursi and 187 in V. vitis-idaea, Table 1), representing 90.4 and 91.7% of the total GC peak areas, respectively. ...two constituents, α-terpineol (7.8%) and linalool (7.3%), were predominant in the oil of A. uva-ursi, additionally characterized by hexadecanoic acid (4.5%) and (E)-geranyl acetone (4.1%). Another common feature of the analyzed oils was the presence of terpenoids (46.8 and 49.5% in A. uva-ursi and V. vitis-idaea oils, respectively) and fatty acid derived compounds (34.1% - V. vitis-idaea, 10.7% - A. uva-ursi oil) in high relative amounts...." [CSLV]
"(CD, 14.1%) represented a significant portion of A. uva-ursi oil. The mentioned constituents belonging to F and CD classes were identified in the V. vitis-idaea oil as well, but were present in a considerably smaller relative amount." [CSLV]

"Chemical studies showed the presence in the aerial part of A. uva-ursi of various groups of phenolic compounds (simple phenols, phenolic glycosides, flavonoids, procyanidins, tannins) [3–5], triterpenes [6], polysaccharides [7], lipids [8], and essential oil [9]. Data on the composition of the plant roots are limited to reports of the presence in them of unedoside [10]." [OPC]


Pharmacology

"Algicide (1; MAB); Antibacterial (1; APA; FAD; PIP; PH2); Antiedemic (1; CAN); Antihepatosis (1; CAN); Antiinflammatory (1; APA; CAN; SHT); Antiseptic (1; BGB; CAN; PH2; WAM); Antitussive (1; MAB); Antityrosinase (1; PHR); Aquaretic (1; SHT); Astringent (1; APA; PIP; PH2; WAM); Bitter (f; PED); Candidicide (1; BGB); Cytotoxic (1; CAN); Depurative (f; DEM); Diuretic (1; APA; CAN; FAD; PH2); Emetic (1; APA); Emmenagogue (f; DEM); Fungicide (1; BGB); Hemostat (1; BGB; FAD); Intoxicant (f; DEM); Laxative (f; DEM); Litholytic (1; CRC; FNF; PH2); Molluscicide (1; CAN); Narcotic (f; DEM); Nephroprotective (1; MAB); Phospholipase-A2-Inhibitor (1; MAB); Tonic (f; DEM); Urinary Antiseptic (1; FAD; PH2; SKY; WAM); Vulnerary (f; DEM)." [HMH Duke]

"Extracts (Bearberry) — Aqueous and methanol extracts molluscicidal at 50 ppm. Antiseptic (bactericidal) activity of arbutin, at least on urinary-tract bacteria, depends on beta-glucosidase activity of the microbe, Enterobacter, Klebsiella, and Streptococcus being highest, Bacillus, Mycobacterium, Shigella, and Staphylococcus apparently intermediate, with Escherichia being lowest. Arbutin is absorbed from the GI tract virtually unchanged. During renal excretion, it is hydrolyzed to the active principle, hydroquinone, which exerts an antiseptic and astringent action on the urinary mucous membranes. The crude extract is reportedly more effective than isolated arbutin, due to other chemicals that may also yield hydroquinone. Gallic acid in the crude extract may prevent beta-glucosidase cleavage of arbutin in the GI tract before absorption, thereby delivering more hydroquinone in renal excretion (CAN). Methanol extract (50%) inhibits tyrosinase. This could also inhibit the formation of melanin from DOPA (KOM). LD50 2% hydroquinone = 320–550 mg/kg orl (MAB); Arbutin = codeine as antitussive and stronger than the non-narcotic dropropizine (MAB)." [HMH Duke]

"The tannins in Uva-Ursi act as an astringent, and the phenol glucocsides and their aglyca have an antibacterial effect. The antimicrobial effect is associated with the aglycon hydroquinone released from arbutin (transport form) or arbutin waste products in the alkaline urine. The drug has urine-sterilizing properties that are attributed to bacteriostatic hydroquinones, conjugates of glucuronic acid and sulfuric acid. The maximum antibacterial effect is expected 3 to 4 hours after administration. There are no clinical studies available that have been definitively evaluated." [PDR]


Dosages

"Dosages (Bearberry) — 10 g leaf (= 400–700 mg arbutin), take only a few days (APA); 10 g dry leaf in 1 quart cold water (SF); 12 g dry leaf/day (= 400–840 mg arbutin) (MAB); 3–6 g dry leaf (PED); 4.5 g dry leaf/22 ml alcohol/23 ml water (PED); 1.5–4 g leaf, or in tea, 3 ×/day (CAN); 2–4 tbsp fresh leaf (PED); 3 g herb/150 ml water 1–4 ×/day (PIP); 1.5–4 ml liquid extract (1:1 in 25% ethanol) 3 ×/day (CAN); 1–4 ml concentrated BPC infusion (CAN); 15–30 ml BPC fresh infusion (CAN); 5 ml tincture 3 ×/day (SKY); 10–17 ml tincture (1:5); 4–8 ml fluid extract (1:2); 2–4 ml liquid leaf extract (PNC); 2–4 ml concentrated leaf infusion (PNC); 1–3 (500 mg) capsules 3 ×/day (NH); 250–500 mg StX (20% arbutin) (SKY)." [HMH Duke]


KinnikinnickArctostaphylos uva-ursi [Turner, Kuhnlein]

Part:GreensPer 100 g fresh weight
Food Energy (Kcal)-Ash (g)1Potassium (mg)-
Water (g)49Thiamine (mg)-Magnesium (mg)-
Protein (g)1.7Riboflavin (mg)-Calcium (mg)221
Fat (g)3.1Niacin (mg)-Phosphorus (mg)39
Crude Fiber (g)4.2Vitamin A (RE)2.1Iron (mg)12.7
Zinc (mg)-Manganese (mg)0.6Copper (mg)-

[Turner&Kuhnlein]


Cultivation
Often planted on sandy slopes, highway cuts, and barren soils to check erosion. Transplant dormant roots in spring, or sink a flowerpot filled with sandy soil near an established patch. After the herb roots itself, cut it free and transplant to the desired area. [Schofield]

"A good ground-cover for steep sandy banks in a sunny position[188, 200] or in light shade[197]. A carpeting plant, growing fairly fast and carpeting as it spreads[208]. It is valuable for checking soil erosion on watersheds[212]. This is also a pioneer plant in the wild, often being the first plant to colonize burnt-over areas, especially on poor soils[155]."[PFAF]
"Requires a deep moist well-drained light or medium lime-free loam in sun or semi-shade[3, 11, 200]. One report says that this species succeeds in alkaline soils[182] (a rather surprising comment considering the general needs of the genus - it is more likely that the plant can grow on limestone so long as the soil remains acid[K]).Shade tolerant[31] but plants produce less fruit when they are grown in the shade[200]. Prefers a cool damp position. A very ornamental plant, it is sometimes cultivated for its medicinal uses[1]. There are a number of named varieties developed for their ornamental interest[200]. The form 'Massachusetts' is an especially prostrate, free-flowering and free-fruiting form[183]. 'Anchor Bay', 'Point Reyes' and 'Vulcan's Peak' have all been mentioned as good groundcover forms[200]. This is one of the first plants to colonize bare and rocky ground and burnt over areas[155]. It is often an indicator of poor soils in the wild[212]. Plants resent root disturbance and should be placed in their final positions as soon as possible[11, 134]. Hybridizes with other members of this genus, especially A. columbiana." [PFAF]

Ectomycorrhizal Fungi
"This is the first study focussing on European A. uva-ursi in subalpine and alpine habitats. Abundant and very species-rich ectomycorrhizal fungal communities were detected in all habitats of A. uva-ursi. The community structure was typical for any ECM host, but the detection of fungi that are usually considered to be highly specific on other host plants was surprising. We conclude that A. uva-ursi harbours a wide array of generalist and host specific fungi that are capable of colonising a wide range of tree hosts." [EMFARC]

[EMFARC]

 


 

Sustainable Harvesting:

"Guidelines for the sustainable gathering and patterns of collection A. uva-ursi biomass in the Pyrenean area were established to obtain optimum yield and to preserve the viability of the populations. Mainly, harvest should occur in populations located in areas without tree stands and/or on southern slopes as these areas have the highest leaf production and are the richest in arbutin content. Plant collection should be done in the autumn to obtain the highest content in arbutin and to do the least harm to the regeneration capacity of the plants. Only a small portion of the total stems and leaves (<25% of the stand cover) should be cut to limit any effect on regeneration capacity of the plant. Harvesting the same population should be limited to once in three to four years being optimal for stand preservation. Finally, a previous selection of the areas to harvest, and a good knowledge of their probable preceding exploitation, is indispensable." [SWHAUU]

Propagation
"Seed - best sown in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe. Pre-soak dried seed in boiling water for 10 - 20 seconds or burn some straw on top of them and then stratify at 2 - 5oc for 2 months[11, 200]. The seed usually germinates in 2 - 3 months at 15oc[134]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a cold frame or greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Cuttings of side shoots of the current season's growth, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August to December in a frame. The cuttings are very slow and can take a year to root[1, 78]. Division in early spring. Take care because the plant resents root disturbance. Pot the divisions up and keep them in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are growing away actively. Layering of long branches in early spring[200, 238]." [PFAF]


References


Page last modified on Monday, September 25, 2017 7:58 PM