Called Fu Ling, also known as Poria cocos, hoelen, tuckahoe, China root, fu shen, matsuhodo. Fu ling comes from the Poria cocos fungus, found in the Polyporaceae family. These fungi often colonize things like tree trunks and roots, with a large mycelium hidden below the surface while the fruiting bodies of the fungus are visible to mushroom hunters. Fu ling happens to favor the ground around pine trees, and it is sought out much like the European truffle. The part of the mushroom which is used is the sclerotium, a hardened compact part of the mycelium which stores up energy for the fungus. It is collected between July and September. The poria with reddish inner side of the superficial layer is called red poria and the poria with white inner side of the superficial layer is called white poria. Fu ling is an herbal remedy used in the practice of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It is extracted from a fungus which is found widely around the world. Many cultures including the Native Americans used fu ling to treat various health problems. Many Chinese herbalists and markets carry fu ling in a variety of forms, and it is also included in a number of tonics which are designed to promote general health. Harvesting fu ling is not recommended unless you are very familiar with mushrooms.
The mushroom is sweet and tasteless in flavor, neutral in property, acting on the heart, spleen and kidney channels. The mushroom is used for inducing diuresis, excreting dampness, invigorating the spleen, replenishing the middle-jiao, and tranquilizing the mind. Fu ling is used as a general purpose yin tonic, promoting health and balance in the body.
1. For dysuria, edema, phlegm retention and others due to retention of water within the body, it is often used with umbellate pore and water-plantain tuber,as in Powder of Five Drugs Including Poria (Wuling San). Since poria is neutral in property, it can be used for damp-heat and cold-damp syndromes in combination with other drugs. In cases of damp-heat syndrome, it is often used with plantain seed and manshurian aris-tolochia stem; or cold-damp syndrome, it is usually used with lateral root of acon-ite and dried ginger; for dizziness, palpitation, cough, and so on due to retention of phlegm, it is often used with cinnamon twig and white atractylodes, as in Decoction of Poria, Cinnamon Twig, Atractylodes and Licorice (Ling GuiZhu Gan Tang).
2. For lassitude, anorexia and loose stool due to deficiency of the spleen, it is always used with dangshen, white atractylodes and licorice, known as Decoction of Four Noble Drugs (Sijinzi Tang).
3. For fright palpitation and insomnia due to insufficiency of the spleen and heart, it is often used with dangshen,longan aril and wild jujube seed, asin Decoction for invigorating the spleen and nourishing the heart (Guipi Tang). For fright palpitation and insomnia due to phlegm retention in the interior or due to breakdown of the physiological coordination between the heart and kidney, it is often used with grass-leaved sweetflag and polygala root, as in Sedative Bolus(Anshen Dingzhi Wan).
Dosage and administration: 10-15g, decocted in water for an oral dose.