Spiny Barberry – Bérberis aristáta DC. (berberis – Barberry ordinary; Lat. aristatus, a, um – spinous). Shrub from the Barberry family – Berberidaceae.
Spiny barberry – deciduous or in the range, semi-evergreen shrub up to 3.5 m in height.
Branches are red-brown, erect. The shoots are yellow, cylindrical, smooth. Spines up to 3 cm long, simple or two-three-parted, thick.
Leaves 5-10 cm long and 2.5-4.5 cm wide, widely elliptical or obovate to lanceolate, with a wedge-shaped base, obtuse at the top, along the edge with three to five large serrated teeth on each side, which end with spines or more often whole-edge, glossy glossy, dark green above, yellowish green below.
Flowers up to 1.2 cm in diameter, yellow with a reddish tint, arranged in bunches of three pieces, which are further collected in ten to twenty five-flowered racemose inflorescences 4-6 cm long. Peduncles of inflorescences 2-3 cm long, pedicels 0.8-1 cm long. Petals are one-piece.
Fruits are up to 1 cm long and 0.8 cm in diameter, ovoid, shiny, red, with a slight bluish wax coating, with a noticeable column. It blooms in June.
Homeland – Nepal. Cultivated as a hedge in India.
In Asian medicine, seeds, roots, bark and fruits are used.
The bark and roots contain alkaloids: berberine, iatrorizin, palmitin, columbine.
Solids in fruits are 36.6%, of which sugars are 8.2%, acids 8.1%, tannins and dyes 1.43%, ascorbic acid 27 mg%.
Sugars include glucose and fructose; organic acids are represented by almost equal amounts of malic and citric (3.86 and 3.39%), succinic and fumaric (40 mg%), hydroxy acids – coffee (630 mg%) and equal amounts of chlorogenic and quinic (70 mg%).
The optimal ratio of biologically active substances is inherent in slightly unripe fruits. Also, the fruits can be used as food.
Seeds, roots, fruits and bark are used for eye diseases, liver dysfunctions, as well as a tonic, astringent, antipyretic, milk product and with severe uterine bleeding.
Spiny barberry is used in Western European medicine.
It is part of Purin ultra.