Contractions. - Xanthox. Xan.
Xanthoxylum Fraxineum. Nat. ord., Xanthoxylaceae.
Synonyms. - X. Americanum, X. fraxinifolium, X. ramiflorum, X. mite.
Fig. - Bigelow, Amer. Med. Bot., pl. 59.
Prickly Ash, Toothache-tree. For. names: German, Zahnwehbaum; French, Claralier.
Habitat. - Canada to Virginia, and west to the Mississippi.
Flowering time. - April and May.
Parts employed. - The bark and berries.
Characters. - A shrub 10 or 12 feet in height, with alternate branches, which are armed with strong conical brown prickles, with a broad base, scattered irregularly, though most frequently in pairs at the insertion of the young branches. The leaves are alternate and pinnate, the leaflets about 5 pairs, with an odd one, nearly sessile, ovate, acute, with slight vesicular serratures, somewhat downy underneath. The common petiole is round, usually prickly on the back, and sometimes unarmed. The flowers are in small, dense, sessile umbels, near the origin of the young branches; they are small, greenish, dioecious, or polygamous, appear before the leaves, and have a somewhat aromatic odour. The bark met with in the market is in fragments of various sizes, quilled, a line or two in thickness, with a light ash-coloured epidermis, which is frequently removed; internally, whitish or glossy; that from the small branches frequently exhibits the prickles. It is faintly odorous, friable with an amylaceous fracture, and has a slightly aromatic taste, succeeded by bitterness and a persistent acridity. Its powder is light grey. The dry fruit consists of an open, bivalved, oval capsule, about 3 lines in length and 2 in diameter, and covered with excavated dots externally; whitish-yellow and smooth internally; enclosing an oval, shining black, wrinkled seed, which is hollow and greyish-yellow internally, inodorous, very brittle, and having the peculiar taste of the capsule in a very faint degree.
Time for collecting. - In the autumn.
Preparations. - Tincture of the bark, using rectified spirit. Tincture of the ripe berries, using rectified spirit.
Reference to Horn. Proving. - Hale's New Remedies.
Proper forms for dispensing. - φ and upwards, Tincture, Pilules, or Globules.