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Author:Philipp Franz von Siebold and Joseph Gerhard Zuccarini
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Gleditsia sinensis

Chinese Honeylocust, Soap Bean, Soap Pod

In Stock: 1.197 lb (Total:1.197lb)
  • Gleditsia sinensis

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Seed lots

1.2 lb


Germination test:
Seeds per lb:
1.2 lb
Collected in:
Crop year:
Min. hardiness zone:
Inventory ID:

Growing Info

Scarification: Pour boiling water over seed , let stand in water for 12 hours; or small numbers of seed , file or sand through the outer seedcoat, let stand in water for 12 hours
Stratification: none required
Germination: sow seed 3/4" deep, tamp the soil, mulch the seed bed

Other: if boiling water treatment does not allow seed to imbibe, sulfuric acid treatment is required 

Chinese medicine. Gleditsia sinensis has been used in China for over 2000 years as a detergent and for medicinal purposes. The thorns of Gleditsia sinensis are used as a medicinal herb in China and Korea and may have antitumor properties. They have been traditionally used for the treatment of inflammatory diseases, such as swelling, suppuration, carbuncle, and skin diseases.

Scientific studies have shown that Gleditsia sinensis exhibits in vitro effects that may indicate antiallergic activities, possibly due to the saponins found in its fruits. Studies in mice suggest that Gleditsia sinensis extract could be an effective therapeutic agent for the treatment of allergic asthma. The thorns also show antibacterial activity against certain Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Additionally, a lupane acid extracted from the thorns has shown in vitro anti-HIV activity. The fruit extract of Gleditsia sinensis has inhibitory effects on isolated cancer cell cultures.

The pod of Gleditsia sinensis is used as a soap substitute. The plant is a deciduous tree that can grow up to 12 meters in height. It is hardy and can tolerate drought and atmospheric pollution. The seed of Gleditsia sinensis is edible and can be roasted, dehusked, soaked, boiled, and eaten with sugar. The young leaves can also be cooked and eaten.

In conclusion, Gleditsia sinensis, also known as Chinese Honeylocust, Soap Bean, or Soap Pod, is a versatile plant with a long history of use in traditional Chinese medicine for various purposes. Its medicinal properties, including potential antitumor and antiallergic activities, antibacterial and anti-HIV properties, make it a valuable plant for further scientific study. Additionally, its use as a soap substitute and as an edible plant adds to its practicality and versatility.

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269 NY-34 Locke NY 13092

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