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Rumex longifolius is a perennial plant that can grow up to 1.20 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of materials.
Plants can contain quite high levels of oxalic acid, which is what gives the leaves of many members of this genus an acid-lemon flavour. Perfectly alright in small quantities, the leaves should not be eaten in large amounts since the oxalic acid can lock-up other nutrients in the food, especially calcium, thus causing mineral deficiencies. The oxalic acid content will be reduced if the plant is cooked. 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[
Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to the Pyrenees, Caucasus and C. Asia.
By rivers, in ditches and in damp grassy places[
Succeeds in most soils but prefers a deep fertile moderately heavy soil that is humus-rich, moisture-retentive but well-drained and a position in full-sun or part shade[
Leaves - cooked[
]. Harvested as they appear through the ground, they are eaten as a vegetable for their antiscorbutic action[
Seed - ground into a powder and used in gruel or added to cereal flours when making bread etc[
The whole plant, but especially the root, is alterative, astringent, cholagogue, deobstruent, stomachic and tonic[
Although no specific mention has been made for this species, dark green to brown and dark grey dyes can be obtained from the roots of many species in this genus, They do not need a mordant[
Seed - sow spring in situ.
Division in spring.