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Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng)

Close up of Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng)

What is Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng)?

Platycodon Grandiflorus (jie geng, 桔梗), also known as Platycodon Root, Doraji, Radix Platycodi or Dried Balloon Flower Root, refers to the dry root of Platycodon grandiflorum, a perennial herbaceous plant that belongs to the Campanulaceae family. With its amazing medicinal properties for soothing one’s Lungs and expelling pus, there is high demand for this herb in the market. Also, due to its refreshing and crisp texture, Jie Geng is used as a vegetable in many places.

In China, Jie Geng is mainly cultivated in Northeast and North China, where Jie Geng produced in the former area is generally acknowledged as of better quality. This herb is usually harvested in autumn. After removing its fibrous roots, scraping off its outer skin, and soaking in water for two to three hours, the herb is then sliced and dried under the sun for medicinal usage.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Jie Geng falls under the category of ‘Warm herbs that transform phlegm and stop cough’. Such herbs can treat Stagnation of Fluids, which can transform into phlegm when it over-accumulates. Neutral in nature, Jie Geng does not affect one’s yin-yang balance.

Bitter and pungent in taste, Jie Geng can cleanse the body by clearing Heat, drying Dampness and promoting elimination via urination or bowel movements. Also, Jie Geng can promote the circulations of qi and body fluids. In particular, Jie Geng targets the Lungs.

Functions and Benefits of Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng)

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) shows that Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) has the following health benefits.

Jie Geng can disperse Lung qi to ease one’s chest and diaphragm. Also, Jie Geng can eliminate phlegm and relieve cough, which is why it is often used to treat cough, profuse phlegm and oppression in the chest. For cough caused by Wind-Cold, Jie Geng can be combined with Wind-Cold-dispelling, Lung-ventilating and Phlegm-resolving herbs to enhance its effectiveness. For cough caused by Wind-Heat invasion of Lungs, Jie Geng can be combined with Wind-dispelling and Heat-clearing antitussives to enhance its effectiveness.

As it is good at dispersing Lung qi, Jie Geng is also used to relieve sore throat and help one regain one’s voice. It is good at treating painful throat and hoarse voice caused by external pathogen contraction. 

In addition, Jie Geng can dispel Phlegm and pus from one’s Lungs. For Lung abscess with pyemesis and cough with chest pain, Jie Geng can be combined with Phlegm-resolving and toxicity-relieving herbs to enhance its effectiveness. The herb can also relieve secondary symptoms of pus such as chest pain, fever, cough with blood and pus and thick yellow sticky sputum.

Close up of Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng)
Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) can help to ease coughs with excessive discharge.

How to Use Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng)

The recommended daily dosage of Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) is 3 – 10g, when used in the form of decoction, pills or powder.

Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) and its supplements can be found in many herbal stores and Asian specialty markets.

Cautions and Side Effects of Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng)

Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) should not be used by individuals experiencing chronic cough caused by Yin Deficiency or hemoptysis. Also, Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) should not be used together with herbs that purge or tonify the Lower Jiao, pork, Radix Gentianae (Long Dan Cao) or Aurillus Longan (Long Yan Rou).

Do note that over-consumption of Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) may cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, sweating, exhaustion and restlessness.

We strongly encourage you to consult your healthcare provider before deciding to add Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng) to your healthcare routine!


Here is a summary for Platycodon Grandiflorus (Jie Geng):

  • Herb name (Chinese): 桔梗
  • Herb name (Pin Yin): jié gěng
  • Herb name (English): Platycodon Root
  • Herb name (Botanical): Radix Platycodonis
  • Origin of species: Platycodon grandiflorum (Jacq.) A. DC
  • Part(s) of herb used: Roots
  • Geo-specific habitat(s): Many parts of China
  • Taste(s) & Properties: Bitter, pungent; Neutral; Administrates the Lung Meridian
  • Actions: Eases coughs with excessive oral discharge; Relieves throat discomforts or loss of voice; Eases symptoms of lung abscess by relieving pus and phlegm discharge

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