Siberian Ginseng

Botanical Name: Eleutherococcus senticosus Family: Araliaceae

Common name(s): Siberian Ginseng, Eleuthero Root, Devil’s Shrub | Purple (male) and yellow (female) flowers in early summer.


  • Shrub; perennial | Zone 3-8 | 8-15 feet tall | flowers (purple for male, yellow for female) bloom in early summer. Pollination is by bees | oval blue-ish black berries
  • Part shade – full sun | any soil | keep moist
  • Grows in thickets or clumps at the edge of the forest | propagate from seed


Berries are harvested in late summer. Bark is harvested in the spring. The bark is a stronger stimulant, and most of what I read refers to using the bark. The berries contain the essential oils, however. Leaves can be used for tea.


Siberian Ginseng is a tonic herb and is meant to be used over a period of time (not to exceed 6 weeks) during times of stress.

Decoction: add 20g dried or 40g fresh root to 3 cups cold water and bring to a boil. Boil for 20-30 minutes (will boil down to 2 cups liquid). Strain. Take 35ml 2x/day.

Tincture: Take 1/2 tsp with water 3x/day

Tablet/Powder: 0.2 – 1g 3x/day


Constituents: Eleutherosides, Essential oil, resin, starch, vitamin A

Actions: Adaptogen, antirheumatic, antispasmodic, stimulant, tonic

Uses: Low energy, increasing endurance, exhaustion, chronic illness recovery support, impotence

Cautions: Do not take for more than 6 weeks at a time.


Sweetish, acrid, warm


All the ginsengs seem to be hard to get established and take a long time to mature to harvest. But I have woods on my property, so I’m going to try. In one of these references, it says that regular ginseng and Siberian ginseng won’t grow next to each other, however. Something to keep in mind if you want to try, too. 

I have not used this herb yet, but I’m about to make a stimulant tonic tea using it.