The "Hankai-so" (Ligularia japonica) belongs to the family Asteraceae (the Aster family). It is a perennial herb that is native from Shizuoka-prefecture of Honshu west to Shikoku and Kyushu, as well as Taiwan, the Korean Penunsula and China. This herb grows in montane wettish places, and it can reach 70-150 cm in height. The basal leaves are large and divided into palmetely with long petioles. The cauline leaves are alternate, three per bundle and enfold stems. The yellow flower-heads, about 10 cm across, bloom in the corymbose cluster atop of the flowering stalks from June to July. The Japanese name is derived from Fan Kuai who was a military general who lived in the early Western Han dynasty.