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Sheeps Sorrel


A 'Halberd' shaped Sheeps Sorrel leaf.
A 'Halberd' shaped Sheeps Sorrel leaf.
Sheeps Sorrel flowering.
Sheeps Sorrel flowering.
Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.
Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.
Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.
Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.
Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.
Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.
Very young Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.
Very young Sheeps Sorrel, Rumex acetosella.


Edibility Edible
   
Common Name 2 Red Sorrel
Common Name 3 Sourweed
Common Name 4 Field Sorrel
Latin Name Rumex acetosella
   
Season Start January
Season End December
   
   
Habitat Meadows, fields, parks, lawns and sometimes open woodland.
Leaves Halberd, an old pike or lance, or arrow shaped. A little like Common Sorrel but instead of pointed leaf bases the bottoms of the leaves are lobed and can stick out.
Flowers The flowers are small and yellow/green for males and red for females, growing on a tall flower stalk bteween April and November.
Stem Grows in a rosette so apart from the flower stalk it does not have a stem.
Roots Many and tangled with a spreading rhizome.
Smell Citrusy.
Taste Like apple peel or citrus but not as sharp as Common or Wood Sorrel.
Collecting Only collect this for more than nibbling if there are several or large patches of the plant about.
Possible Confusion 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.
It is a distinctive looking plant but if unsure a tiny nibble will reveal this plants identity.
Description Fairly common. 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