We have included Rumex bequaertii in the synonymy of this species, as so treated in several recent treatments such as the Flora of Somalia[
]. Some authorities, however, still recognise this as a distinct African species and, if this becomes more commonly accepted, then the reports here that are from Africa would need to be transferred to Rumex bequaertii[
Rumex andreaeanus Makino
Rumex baehnii Rech.f.
Rumex bequaertii De Wild.
Rumex camptodon Rech.f.
Rumex esquirolii H.Lév.
Rumex hamatus Trevir.
Rumex hamulosus Meisn.
Rumex hararensis Dammer
Rumex quarrei De Wild.
Rumex ramulosus Meisn.
Rumex remotiflorus Sam.
Rumex roxburghianus Schult. & Schult.f.
Rumex steudelianus Meisn.
Rumex uncatus Schult. & Schult.f.
Rumex uncinatus Schult. & Schult.f.
Rumex nepalensis is a herbaceous, perennial plant producing erect, branched stems 50 - 180cm tall from a large rootstock[
The plant is sometimes harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of tannins.
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[
SW. Europe through Asia to China, Vietnam and Indonesia; Africa, mainly in the east from Eritrea and Somalia to S. Africa
Cultivated areas and grazed ground, 1,200 - 4,300 metres from Afghanistan to S.W. China[
]. Grassland, bushland, rain-forest, forest edges, riverside grassland, swamps; at elevations from 690 - 3,700 metres in Africa[
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Rumex nepalensis is a plant of the warm temperate to tropical zones, usually being found at higher elevations in the tropics.
Species in this genus generally succeed in a variety of soils, but they prefer deep fertile moderately heavy soils that are humus-rich, moisture-retentive and also well-drained, with a position in full-sun or part shade[
Being wind -pollinated, Rumex species usually hybridize readily, especially with other members of the genus they are more closely related to[
Tender young leaves and shoots - cooked as a vegetable[
]. Usually only eaten in times of scarcity and then mixed with other vegetables[
The root is purgative[
]. It is used as a substitute for rhubarb (Rheum spp.)[
]. A decoction of the root is drunk for the treatment of rheumatism, colic, stomach-ache and abdominal pains caused by intestinal parasites[
A strong decoction of the root is applied to dislocated bones[
]. A paste of the root is applied to swollen gums[
]. The roasted root is applied to abscesses[
The leaves are used in the treatment of colic[
]. A strong leaf decoction is said to be effective in the treatment of schistosomiasis[
The juice of the leaves is applied externally to relieve headaches[
]. The crushed leaves are applied as a poultice on wounds[
The plant is also considered to be antidote, depurative and laxative, as well as a medicine for treating coughs and headaches[
A decoction of the plant is used to wash the body in order to alleviate body pain[
The root contains 5 - 13% tannin[
]. It is used for dyeing[
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[
The plant is used to clean blackened cooking pots[
Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer.
Division in spring.