Rumex sanguineus

Rumex sanguineus var. sanguineus
(ROO-meks san-GWIN-ee-us)
Family: Polygonacee

Common name: bloody dock; red-veined dock; bloody sorrel
Zone: 4 – 8
Height: 10-15 in (25-38cm) Spread: 6-12 in (15-30cm)
Aspect: full sun; partial shade
Soil: average; well-draining
Water: moderate

Description: An herbaceous perennial with an upright habit and a long tap-root. Bright green, lanceolate leaves have a gentle ripple and are distinctively marked with deep red veining. Tiny, star-shaped flowers are borne on erect stems in June through July. Flowers start out green then turn reddish-brown before producing dark brown seeds. Seeds ripen late July through September.


Special Notes: Native to Europe, northern Africa and southwest regions of Asia. Flowers are hermaphrodite – have both male and female organs. Cut plant back hard after flowering to produce a fresh flush of leaves. Leaves are edible but contain oxalic acid which gives them an acid-lemon flavour. Safe to eat in moderate amounts. Oxalic acid concentration level is lower in young leaves; increases as leaves age. Limit amount of leaves in diet if you suffer from arthritis, rheumatism, kidney stones, gout or hyperacidity. Problems may include slugs, snails, rust, leaf spot and smuts – a plant disease caused by a particular fungus. Propagate by seed; division in spring or fall.


Posted on May 7, 2013