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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Black Hellebore
Veratrum nigrum
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
Order: Liliales
Family: Melanthiaceae
Genus: Veratrum
Species: V. nigrum
Binomial name
Veratrum nigrum

Veratrum nigrum (Black Hellebore [1]) is a medicinal plant and poisonous plant native to Asia and Europe. In China, it, and other false hellebore species are collectively called "li lu" (藜蘆).

Medicinal Usage

The roots of V. nigrum and V. schindleri have been used in Chinese herbalism. Li lu is used internally as a powerful emetic of last resort, and topically to kill external parasites, treat tinea and scabies, and stop itching. [2]. Many root (and root-shaped) herbs used in Chinese herbalism, particularly ginseng, san qi, and hai seng, will create and or exacerbate a toxic effect[2]. Some herbalists refuse to prescribe li lu internally, citing the extreme difficulty in preparing a safe and effective dosage, and that death has occurred at a dosage of 0.6 grams[2].


  1. ^ Veratrum nigrum at Plants For A Future
  2. ^ a b c Bensky, D., Clavey, S., Stoger, E. (3rd edition 2004) Materia Medica Eastland Press, Inc. Seattle, p 461


Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies

Veratrum nigrum


Classification System: APG II (down to family level)

Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiospermae
Cladus: Monocots
Ordo: Liliales
Familia: Melanthiaceae
Tribus: Melanthieae
Genus: Veratrum
Species: Veratrum nigrum


Veratrum nigrum L., Sp. pl. 2:1044. 1753


[1] [2]

  • Helonias nigra (L.) Ker Gawl.
  • Melanthium nigrum (L.) Thunb., Diss. Melanth. 8, 1797.
  • Veratrum bracteatum Batalin
  • Veratrum nigrum subsp. ussuriense (Loesener) Voroschilov
  • Veratrum nigrum var. microcarpum Loesener
  • Veratrum nigrum var. ussuriense Loesener
  • Veratrum purpureum Salisb., Prodr. 214. 1796. nom. illeg.
  • Veratrum ussuriense (Loesener) Nakai.


  1. Tela Botanica - Flore Électronique
  2. Flora of China

Vernacular names

English: black-hellebore
Svenska: Svart nysrot


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