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Home » Plant infomation

Euonymus atropurpureus  Jacq.


Botanical Name


Euonymus atropurpureus Jacq.

English Name


Wahoo, Eastern wahoo, Burning bush, Spindle tree, Bitter-ash





General Info


A low branching shrub that reaches 20 feet in height. Bark thin, greenish-brown to reddish brown, shallow longitudinal splits. Leaf opposite, simple, elliptical, 2 1/2 to 4 inches long, finely serrated, long pointed, green above, paler and may be pubescent below. Flowers perfect, inconspicuous (1/3 inch across), 4 dark purple petals with whitish anthers, appearing in late spring in multiple branched clusters. Fruits 4-lobed capsule, 1/2 inch across, pink to purple in color, splits open to reveal dark red seeds, ripens in fall.

Herb Effects

Alterative, cardiac, cathartic, cholagogue, diuretic, expectorant, hepatic, laxative, stimulant and tonic (stem and root bark); emetic and strongly laxative (seed)


Plants For A Future


Active Ingredients

Asparagine (bark); citric acid, linoleic acid, malic acid, tartaric acid (plant); dulcitol, tannin (root)

Chemistry of Active Ingredients
Product Categories






Product Categories
Asparagine 2058-58-4 2,4-diamino-4-oxo-bu
tanoic acid
C4H8N2O3 Click Here To Enlarge
Citric acid Not Available 2-hydroxypropane-1,2
C6H8O7 Click Here To Enlarge
Linoleic acid 8024-22-4 Octadeca-9,12-dienoi
c acid
C18H32O2 Click Here To Enlarge
Malic acid Not Available 2-hydroxybutanedioic
C4H6O5 Click Here To Enlarge
Tartaric acid 526-83-0 2,3-dihydroxybutaned
ioic acid
C4H6O6 Click Here To Enlarge
Dulcitol 608-66-2 hexane-1,2,3,4,5,6-h
C6H14O6 Click Here To Enlarge
Tannin 1401-55-4 Not Available C27H22O18 Click Here To Enlarge


Medicinal Use

The root bark or sometimes the stem bark is useful in the treatment of biliousness and liver disorders which follow or accompany fevers and for treating various skin disorders such as eczema which could arise from poor liver and gallbladder function. It is also used as a tea in the treatment of malaria, liver congestion, constipation etc. The powdered bark, applied to the scalp, was believed to eliminate dandruff. The bark and the root have been used in the treatment of heart conditions. A tea made from the roots is used in cases of uterine prolapse, vomiting of blood, painful urination and stomach-aches.


Should not be given to pregnant women or nursing mothers.


James A Duke and Maryl Fulton. Handbook of Medicinal Herbs - 2nd Edition, P: 758, CRC Press July 2002.



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