Wildfood UK
01981 590 604

Common Sorrel


Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
Common Sorrel flowering.
Common Sorrel flowering.
Common Sorrel flowering.
Common Sorrel flowering.
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa.
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa.
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
A Sorrel leaf looking very like Lords and Ladies except for the pointed 'tails'.
A Sorrel leaf looking very like Lords and Ladies except for the pointed 'tails'.
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa
Common Sorrel hiding in grass.
Common Sorrel hiding in grass.
Common Sorrel hiding in grass.
Common Sorrel hiding in grass.


Edibility Edible
   
Common Name 2 Garden Sorrel
Common Name 3 Narrow Leaved Dock
Common Name 4 Spinach Dock
Latin Name Rumex acetosa
   
Season Start All year
Season End All year
   
   
Habitat Meadows, fields, parks, lawns and sometimes open woodland.
Leaves The leaves can be long and arrow shaped or when young, shorter and more rounded but at the base of the leaf it always has pointed 'tails' which is a key identifying feature of this plant. The leaves have a shiney appearence and are usually green but can develop red features.
Flowers In summer sorrel develops spikes of many small red to yellow flowers.
Stem The plant grows as a rosette and only really has a flower 'stem' in summer.
Roots N/A
Smell N/A
Taste Sharp and citrus, described by many as like apple peel.
Collecting Younger smaller leaves are the best for salads but all leaves can be used with the exception of the flower stem leaves as these become a little bitter.
Possible Confusion Large mature sorrel leaves can look a bit like young Arum leaves but the sharply pointed 'tails' of sorrel leaves should avoid confusion, Arum leaves have rounded 'tails'.

The leaves are similar to Field Bindweed, Convolvulus arvensis but this is a sprawling plant that grows along the ground with white petalled flowers, sorrel grows as a rosette and the flowers are small, round and red/green/yellow.

Description The name 'common' really does describe this plant and we can usually find it in any grass type environment at any time of year save a very harsh winter or a drought over summer.

Sorrel can be used as a garnish, a salad leaf, a green for soups and stews or as a sweet ingredient for cakes and sorbets.

All the sorrels contain oxalic acid and should be avoided by people prone to kidney stones but with most of these things the amount of oxalic acid is tiny and oxalic acid can be found in spinach, cabbage, rhubarb, beans, coffee and chocolate, none of which has a health warning about the oxalic acid content..

Medical Use Sorrel has diuretic properties and can be used to treat sinusitus, it was also used in the past to pervent and treat scurvy.
Other Use