Herbs Guide

Cascara Sagrada

Family Name: Rhamnaceae

Botanical Name(s): Rhamnus Purshianus

Popular Name(s): Cascara Sagrada, Sacred Bark, Purshiana Bark, Persian Bark, Chittem Bark, Bearberry, California Buchthorn, Cascara.

Parts Used: Bark

Habitat: Native to the provinces and states of the Pacific coast, including British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, and Northern California.

Description: Cascara sagrada is a 20-foot tree with reddish brown bark and thin serrated leaves. Umbels of small flowers appear in late spring, followed by poisonous black berries.

Uses: Cascara sagrada bark is used for constipation where a stimulant laxative is required. It is also used for colitis, digestive complaints, hemorrhoids, liver problems and jaundice. Cascara Sagrada is a mild laxative, acting principally on the large intestine.