Rumex acetosella 

Sheep Sorrel

Names and Myths

Rumex The ancient name

acetosella little sorrel or slightly acid.

Sorrel refers to its sour taste.34

Natural history / Folklore

Naturalized from Europe where it was a major food plant during World War Two. Leaves some times used as salad greens. Some of the bitterness may be removed by boiling in several changes of water. Should be used in moderation oxalic acid is an irritant and can cause kidney stones.32 Some herbalist therefore suggest that it not be taken by the very old, or young.57

Sorrels may indicate an acid soil.34 Spreads by seeds and creeping rootstocks. The roots break easily, hence it is hard to remove from gardens.

Can be used as a source for black dye.39

Species List Family Group
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June - August.  Small red to purple even yellow flowers on spikes Grows in colonies, can be extensive. Roadsides fields and pastures.