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Useful Temperate Plants

Persicaria maculosa

Gray

Polygonaceae

+ Synonyms

Persicaria amblyophylla H.Hara

Persicaria dolichopoda (Ohki) Nakai

Persicaria fallax Greene

Persicaria fusiformis (Greene) Greene

Persicaria granulata Greene

Persicaria incana Gray

Persicaria interrupta Gray

Persicaria lorinseri Opiz

Persicaria mitis Delarbre

Persicaria mitis Garsault

Persicaria opaca (Sam.) Koidz.

Persicaria persicaria (L.) Small

Persicaria pusilla Gray

Persicaria rivularis Opiz

Persicaria ruderalis C.F.Reed

Persicaria salicifolia Gray

Persicaria vulgaris Webb & Moq.

Peutalis persicaria (L.) Raf.

Polygonon persicarium (L.) St.-Lag.

Polygonum albescens Gand.

Polygonum amblyophyllum (H.Hara) Kitam.

Polygonum arnassense Gand.

Polygonum bellardii Blanco

Polygonum biforme Wahlenb.

Polygonum camptocladum Gand.

Polygonum caniusculum Gand.

Polygonum debilius Gand.

Polygonum elatiusculum Gand.

Polygonum erythrocladum Gand.

Polygonum fallax Greene

Polygonum fusiforme Greene

Polygonum hirtovaginum Gand.

Polygonum humifixum Gand.

Polygonum ilophilum Gand.

Polygonum intermixtum Gand.

Polygonum interruptellum Gand.

Polygonum lacunosum Gand.

Polygonum lamellosum Gand.

Polygonum lapathifolium Willd.

Polygonum longipilum Gand.

Polygonum lorinseri Opiz

Polygonum lugdunense Gand.

Polygonum millepunctatum Gand.

Polygonum niloticum Meisn.

Polygonum nisus Gand.

Polygonum opacum Sam.

Polygonum orthocladum Gand.

Polygonum ovatolanceolatum Gand.

Polygonum pallidiflorum Gand.

Polygonum persicaria L.

Polygonum praelongum Gand.

Polygonum punctatum Kitt.

Polygonum rhombaeum Gand.

Polygonum rubelliflorum Gand.

Polygonum ruderale Salisb.

Polygonum rufescens Gand.

Polygonum serotinum Ten.

Polygonum subcanum Gand.

Polygonum subsimplex Gand.

Polygonum vernum Raf.

Common Name: Red Leg

No Image.

General Information

Persicaria maculosa is an erect to procumbent, annual plant with stems that can be branched or simple[ it can grow from 20 - 120cm tall[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
1093
Title
Invasive Species Compendium
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cabi.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An immense resource - in depth information on over 900 species of invasive plants (it also has information on animals, fungi etc).
].
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of materials.
Persicaria maculosa is an annual plant that can be very competitive with crop plants, particularly in moist areas, and has an ability to spread rapidly once introduced to an area. The economic impact of the plant in agricultural production is sufficient for various governments to declare this weed as a noxious pest, and it is also listed as invasive in many areas, especially the Ameriicas[
1093
Title
Invasive Species Compendium
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cabi.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An immense resource - in depth information on over 900 species of invasive plants (it also has information on animals, fungi etc).
].

Known Hazards

Although no specific mention has been made for this species, there have been reports that some members of this genus can cause photosensitivity in susceptible people.
Many species also contain oxalic acid (the distinctive lemony flavour of sorrel) - whilst not toxic this substance can bind up other minerals making them unavailable to the body and leading to mineral deficiency. Having said that, a number of common foods such as sorrel and rhubarb contain oxalic acid and the leaves of most members of this genus are nutritious and beneficial to eat in moderate quantities. Cooking the leaves will reduce their content of oxalic acid. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones or hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition[
238
Title
Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
Publication
 
Author
Bown. D.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley, London.
Year
1995
ISBN
0-7513-020-31
Description
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
].

Botanical References

17
Title
Flora of the British Isles.
Publication
 
Author
Clapham, Tutin and Warburg.
Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Year
1962
ISBN
-
Description
A very comprehensive flora, the standard reference book but it has no pictures.
,
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
270
Title
Flora of N. America
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/fna/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line version of the flora with an excellent description of the plant including a brief mention of plant uses.

Range

Widespread in the Temperate regions of the northern hemisphere, including Britain.

Habitat

Damp shady places[
5
Title
Food for Free.
Publication
 
Author
Mabey. R.
Publisher
Collins
Year
1974
ISBN
0-00-219060-5
Description
Edible wild plants found in Britain. Fairly comprehensive, very few pictures and rather optimistic on the desirability of some of the plants.
]. A common weed of cultivated land, avoiding shade[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
]. Weedy, moist semiwaste to cultivated area[
270
Title
Flora of N. America
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/fna/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line version of the flora with an excellent description of the plant including a brief mention of plant uses.
]. Streamsides, wet areas, field margins; at elevations from 100 - 1,800 metres[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
].

Properties

Weed PotentialYes
Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitAnnual
Height0.60 m
PollinatorsSelf
Self-fertileYes
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

Persicaria maculosa is a very cold-hardy plant, being able to tolerate temperatures down to around -25°c when fully dormant. It is also a very adaptable plant and can be found through much of the temperate zone, extending into the subtropics and also at moderate to high elevations in the tropics[
1093
Title
Invasive Species Compendium
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cabi.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An immense resource - in depth information on over 900 species of invasive plants (it also has information on animals, fungi etc).
].
Succeeds in an ordinary garden soil[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
] but prefers a moisture retentive not too fertile soil in sun or part shade[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Repays generous treatment[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
]. Plants are often found in wet moist soils in the wild, but they also tolerate periods of dryness. They do not tolerate highly acidic soils[
1093
Title
Invasive Species Compendium
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cabi.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An immense resource - in depth information on over 900 species of invasive plants (it also has information on animals, fungi etc).
].
Plants seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits[
233
Title
Perennial Garden Plants
Publication
 
Author
Thomas. G. S.
Publisher
J. M. Dent & Sons, London.
Year
1990
ISBN
0 460 86048 8
Description
A concise guide to a wide range of perennials. Lots of cultivation guides, very little on plant uses.
].

Edible Uses

Leaves and young shoots - raw or cooked[
55
Title
Eat the Weeds.
Publication
 
Author
Harris. B. C.
Publisher
Pivot Health
Year
1973
ISBN
-
Description
Interesting reading.
,
62
Title
A Field Guide to N. American Edible Wild Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Elias. T. and Dykeman. P.
Publisher
Van Nostrand Reinhold
Year
1982
ISBN
0442222009
Description
Very readable.
,
105
Title
Tanaka's Cyclopedia of Edible Plants of the World.
Publication
 
Author
Tanaka. T. & Nakao S.
Publisher
Keigaku Publishing; Tokyo
Year
1976
ISBN
-
Description
The most comprehensive list of edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
,
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
]. They contain about 1.9% fat, 5.4% pectin, 3.2% sugars, 27.6% cellulose, 1% tannin[
178
Title
Chinese Materia Medica.
Publication
 
Author
Stuart. Rev. G. A.
Publisher
Taipei. Southern Materials Centre
Year
1911
ISBN
-
Description
A translation of an ancient Chinese herbal. Fascinating.
].

We have no specific information for this species, but the seed of most, if not all, members of the genus is edible both raw and cooked, and is potentially a good source of amino acids. Unfortunately the seed is also usually rather small and fiddly to utilize[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Medicinal

The leaves are astringent, diuretic, rubefacient and vermifuge[
9
Title
Edible and Medicinal Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Launert. E.
Publisher
Hamlyn
Year
1981
ISBN
0-600-37216-2
Description
Covers plants in Europe. a drawing of each plant, quite a bit of interesting information.
,
21
Title
The Herb Book.
Publication
 
Author
Lust. J.
Publisher
Bantam books
Year
1983
ISBN
0-553-23827-2
Description
Lots of information tightly crammed into a fairly small book.
,
53
Title
The Wild Garden.
Publication
 
Author
De. Bray. L.
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
Interesting reading.
,
178
Title
Chinese Materia Medica.
Publication
 
Author
Stuart. Rev. G. A.
Publisher
Taipei. Southern Materials Centre
Year
1911
ISBN
-
Description
A translation of an ancient Chinese herbal. Fascinating.
,
222
Title
A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America.
Publication
 
Author
Foster. S. & Duke. J. A.
Publisher
Houghton Mifflin Co.
Year
1990
ISBN
0-395-46722-5
Description
A concise book dealing with almost 500 species. A line drawing of each plant is included plus colour photographs of about 100 species. Very good as a field guide, it only gives brief details about the plants medicinal properties.
]. An infusion has been used as a treatment for gravel and stomach pains[
257
Title
Native American Ethnobotany
Publication
 
Author
Moerman. D.
Publisher
Timber Press. Oregon.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-88192-453-9
Description
Very comprehensive but terse guide to the native uses of plants. Excellent bibliography, fully referenced to each plant, giving a pathway to further information. Not for the casual reader.
].
The crushed leaves have been used as a rub to alleviate poison ivy rash[
257
Title
Native American Ethnobotany
Publication
 
Author
Moerman. D.
Publisher
Timber Press. Oregon.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-88192-453-9
Description
Very comprehensive but terse guide to the native uses of plants. Excellent bibliography, fully referenced to each plant, giving a pathway to further information. Not for the casual reader.
].

A decoction of the plant, mixed with flour, has been used as a poultice to help relieve pain[
257
Title
Native American Ethnobotany
Publication
 
Author
Moerman. D.
Publisher
Timber Press. Oregon.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-88192-453-9
Description
Very comprehensive but terse guide to the native uses of plants. Excellent bibliography, fully referenced to each plant, giving a pathway to further information. Not for the casual reader.
]. A decoction of the plant has been used as a foot and leg soak in the treatment of rheumatism[
257
Title
Native American Ethnobotany
Publication
 
Author
Moerman. D.
Publisher
Timber Press. Oregon.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-88192-453-9
Description
Very comprehensive but terse guide to the native uses of plants. Excellent bibliography, fully referenced to each plant, giving a pathway to further information. Not for the casual reader.
].

Other Uses

A yellow dye is obtained from the plant when alum is used as a mordant[
207
Title
The History and Folklore of North American Wild Flowers.
Publication
 
Author
Coffey. T.
Publisher
Facts on File.
Year
1993
ISBN
0-8160-2624-6
Description
A nice read, lots of information on plant uses.
].

Propagation

Seed - sow spring in situ. Seeds are dormant when they are shed from the plant, and require a cold, moist period in order to break that dormancy[
1093
Title
Invasive Species Compendium
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cabi.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An immense resource - in depth information on over 900 species of invasive plants (it also has information on animals, fungi etc).
]. Length of initial seed dormancy varies widely on individual plants and between populations. Seeds normally germinate in the springtime, and those that do not germinate the first season enter secondary dormancy[
1093
Title
Invasive Species Compendium
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cabi.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An immense resource - in depth information on over 900 species of invasive plants (it also has information on animals, fungi etc).
]
Cite as: Temperate Plants Database, Ken Fern. temperate.theferns.info. 2022-08-17. <temperate.theferns.info/plant/Persicaria+maculosa>

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