“Himalayan Viagra” or ‘yarsagumba’ (Ophiocordyceps sinensis)


It’s the time of the year that the mushroom called ‘yarsagumba’ (Ophiocordyceps sinensis), also known locally as ‘keerajari’, appears in the meadows when the snow starts melting.  it is also known as Himalayan Viagra.

The mushroom, which has a long history of use in traditional Chinese medicine (thousands of years), fetches a price of Rs 2 to 5 lakhs per kilogram or much  above locally, depending on quality. It plays a vital role in the local economy, that’s largely pastoral.

It is also called Yart Swa Gun Bu, which in Tibetan means ‘herb in the summer and insect in the winter’. In Nepali it is referred to by the colloquial term Yachagumbu or Yaxagumbu while the Chinese call it Dong cong xia cao.

Usually, as the month of May approaches, villagers from Dasholi, Ghat, Urgam valley, Niti valley, Deval and Joshimath blocks of Chamoli district start start moving into the the higher ranges, armed with essentials and rations. They camp there for at least two months while hunting for the prized mushroom, yarsagumba or Himalayan Viagra.

The heavy snowfall in the higher ranges of Himalayas earlier this week has disrupted the hunt for a prized aphrodisiac fungus popularly referred to as Himalayan viagra. There’s a lot at stake.

Heavy snowfall  has forced villagers to call off the hunt for yarsagumba and climb down from the higher reaches of Chamoli district in Uttarakhand. They will have to wait till the snow melts and that may leave only a handful days left in the Yarsagumba season.

Usually, as the month of May approaches, villagers from Dasholi, Ghat, Urgam valley, Niti valley, Deval and Joshimath blocks of Chamoli district start  moving into the higher ranges, armed with essentials and rations. They camp there for at least two months while hunting for the prized mushroom.

source

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: