shopping Cascara sagrada - two varieties
Cascara sagrada bark, c/s, wild crafted image
[ 1186 ]Rhamnus purshiana

Cascara Sagrada Bark Cut & Sifted, Wild Crafted

1/4 Pound:  $5.33 Pound:  $11.85 
Cascara sagrada bark, powder, wild crafted image
[ 708 ]Rhamnus purshiana

Cascara Sagrada Bark Powder, Wild Crafted

1/4 Pound:  $5.90 Pound:  $13.11 
We offer discounted pricing on orders over 100 pounds. Contact Us

Wholesale Cascara sagrada

Rhamnus purshiana
plant overview
cascara sagrada contains emodin

Cascara sagrada herb is a botanical obtained from the bark of a North American shrub-like tree known as the Californian Buckthorn. The common name is Spanish for “sacred bark,” no doubt a tribute to the herb’s usefulness attributed by Spanish conquistadors that occupied the Pacific Northwest in the 1600s. The Chinook natives of the region, who called it “chittem bark,” harvested Cascara sagrada herb for its emodin content long before it was commercially prepared and sold by the pharmaceutical company Parke-Davis in the late 19th century.

Clicking "learn more" next to each variety will take you to individual product pages for details.

A Bit of Botany

a little botanical information about cascara sagrada

Rhamnus purshiana is an evergreen tree of the Rhamnaceae family growing to 10 m (32ft) by 6 m (19ft). It is in flower from May to June, and the seeds ripen in October. Leaves are borne in an alternate fashion at the ends of the limbs. Leaves are simple and elliptic to oblong in shape. Mature leaves can be up to 6" long. They have 10-15 parallel veins and a pointed tip. During the growing season the leaves are dark green on their upper surfaces and lighter below. Fall foliage can become a very intense yellow, with shades of orange and red possible. In May small green-white flowers appear. Flowers have sepals, petals, and stamens in clusters. Flowers are classified as umbels. Flowers morph to small black berries (drupes). They are obtusely 3-angled, about the size of a large pea, and contain 3 black, shining seeds. Immature berries are red but mature to deep purple to black.

common names & nomenclature
The common name Cascara Sagrada means "sacred bark" in Spanish.

Also known as:
chittim wahoo, sacred bark, cascara sagrada, holy bark, persian bark, puchiana bark, christ's thorn, bear wood, california buckthorn, purchiana bark, chittam bark, cascara buckthorn, cascara, bearberry, chittem, chitticum, frangula purshiana, rhamnus purshianus

Cascara Sagrada, botanical that contains emodin

Where in the World

habitat and range for cascara sagrada

Cascara sagrada herb is native from northern California to British Columbia and east to the Rocky Mountains in Montana.

Cultivation & Harvesting

considerations for growing and harvesting cascara sagrada

Cascara sagrada herb is found along stream sides in the mixed deciduous-coniferous forests of valleys, and in moist mountain forests. Cascara for sale is common in the understory of big leaf maple forest, alongside red osier dogwood and red alder. Prefers sun to part shade.

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings.

Sow seeds in the autumn in a cold frame. Stored seed will require 1 - 2 months cold stratification at about 5° and should be sown as early in the year as possible in a cold frame or outdoor area. Transplant out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle, and grow them on in the greenhouse or cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer of the following year. Take cuttings of half-ripe wood in July/August, or cuttings of mature wood of the current year's growth in Autumn, plant cuttings in a cold frame. Can propagate by layering in early spring.

The bark is collected in the spring or early summer, when it easily peels from the tree. Once stripped from the tree, the bark must be aged for at least 1 year before use.

The dried bark is cut into small pieces or ground into powder. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

Cascara bark must be stored for at least a year before use. The fresh herb contains chemicals that can cause violent catharsis and severe intestinal cramps. Drying changes these chemicals and gives the Cascara sagrada herb a milder action. Fresh bark may also be artificially dried by baking at 250°F for several hours.

The Rest of the Story

additional information

Formulas & recipes
Cascara sagrada bark comes from a plant that is part of the buckthorn family. The powder form of the dried bark is added to capsules and juices for its nutrients, whereas the cut and sifted bark is more so used for tea blends. The bark has an extremely bitter taste, so it is not used for many culinary purposes other than being added to some baked goods. Cascara sagrada bark is highly regarded for its laxative qualities, being a great option for a natural remedy for constipation. When used as a laxative, it should be taken with a large amount of water for best results.

Cascara sagrada bark tea
-Add 1 teaspoon of the herb to a tea bag
-Pour 2 cups boiled water over the tea bag
-Let steep for 10 minutes
-Enjoy with plenty of added sweetener

for educational purposes only

This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

please be advised:  Before making any changes to your diet you should always consult with your doctor, especially if you are pregnant, nursing or have existing conditions.

All reviews solely reflect the views and opinions expressed by the reviewer and not that of Monterey Bay Herb Co. We do not verify or endorse any claims made by any reviewer. None of these statements have been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health condition.