Evergreen tree growing to 100 ft (30 m). Has reddish-brown bark, oblong or elliptical leaves, and clusters of small yellow flowers.
Habitat & Cultivation
Yohimbe is native to the forests of western Africa, especially Cameroon, Zaïre, and Gabon. The bark is gathered at any time of year.
Yohimbe contains approximately 6% indole alkaloids (including yohimbine), pigments, and tannins. The alkaloids have a cerebral stimulant action at moderate doses, but are highly toxic in large doses.
History & Folklore
Yohimbe has an ancient reputation in western Africa, especially among the Bantu people, as a male aphrodisiac and mild hallucinogen.
Medicinal Actions & Uses
Yohimbe is little used in herbal medicine owing to its potential toxicity. In western Africa, it is often employed as a stimulant and as a means to counter erectile dysfunction. Yohimbine has been used in conventional medicine in the treatment of erectile dysfunction.
Take yohimbe only under professional supervision. The herb is subject to legal restrictions in many countries.