Curly dock leaves are lanceolate and up to 20 inches long, whereas broadleaf dock has lanceolate-ovate leaves that are up to 30 inches long. Curly dock may also be called yellow dock, sour dock, or narrowleaf dock, depending on where they are purchased. Richard H. Uva, Joseph C. Neal and Joseph M. Ditomaso, Busching, M. K., and F. T. Turpin. This is a classic combination with the plant. The native docks tend to like to live near streams and in open forests, and occasionally you will find curly dock there, too. Curly dock, as you might imagine, has wavy, ruffled edges to its leaves. Curly dock rosette (left). Rumex crispus ssp. Or olive oil, chile, garlic and black pepper. Dock leaves are an excellent source of both vitamin A and vitamin C, as well as a source of iron and potassium. Edible parts of Curled Dock: Leaves - raw or cooked. Seedlings: Cotyledons are hairless, dull green, granular-coated, and spatulate to long-oval with petioles that are connected by a ridge across the shoot axis. This is not the case in the rest of the country, where actual winter shuts things down.Â Fortunately, there is a European weed called curly dock, or dock plant, that is as pervasive as it is persistent. This plant has medical uses in European herbal medicine as well. Curly Dock, a rhubarb relative, is also known as sour or yellow dock. The 6-8" long elliptical or lance-shaped leaves of curly dock have entire but wavy margins (not toothed). What to do with them? Rumex crispus, the curly dock, curled dock or yellow dock, is a perennial flowering plant in the family Polygonaceae, native to Europe and Western Asia.. Think of dock as the love child of spinach and rhubarb or sorrel (R. acetosa), and you’ll get a good idea about the flavor of this edible wild green. It has smooth leaves shooting off from a large basal rosette, with distinctive waved or curled edges. How to Use Curly Dock Leaves. Rumex triangulivalvis – White dock, willow dock or narrow-leafed dock is identified by it’s long, flat, narrow leaves that vaguely resemble willow leaves in shape (only much larger). Exotic, rich, spicy, tangy, “green.” For a less esoteric take, go for butter and Cajun seasoning. Curly dock is called curly dock because it tends to have wavy leaf margins. Summary: Curled Dock is an erect, several stemmed plant up to 1.5 m tall with long, pointed, oval, crisped edged leaves, 40-240 mm long in a basal rosette and smaller leaves up the stem. from the June 23, 2013 Newsletter issued from the Frio Canyon Nature Education Center in the valley of the Dry Frio River in northern Uvalde County, southwestern Texas, on the southern border of the Edwards Plateau, USA Gotta say it rocked the house! Curled dock is a perennial plant that grows freely in disturbed soils, including fields, vacant lots, streamsides, and forest edges. Welcome to Hunter Angler Gardener Cook, the internet's largest source of recipes and know-how for wild foods. Follow me on Instagram and on Facebook. Established plants emerge from the taproot in midspring, producing a robust rosette. Look at the rosette. This plant is also known as curled dock, narrow dock and curly leaf dock. I am a chef, author, and yes, hunter, angler, gardener, forager and cook. The leaves can also be steamed like spinach, and served lightly seasoned, ideally mixed with other greens or vegetables. Stems are solitary or occur in small groups from the root crown. Rumex crispus ssp. The resulting flour is much like buckwheat in flavor, and while some may find it too bitter, many prefer the seeds over the tartness of the leaves. Rumex obtusifolius is widely distributed throughout the world. Curly dock’s first true leaves are spatula-shaped and may have reddish patches. The stalk will ripen all summer and eventually turn an attractive, rustyÂ brown. Appearance. The leaves are fairly thick and the stems can get a tinge of red, especially in cold weather. Curly dock has dark green, hairless For those who need to know precisely and with absolute certainty which plant they're dealing with, use the botanical Latin name. Hey there. These leaves are not as bitter. But I … Stems are smooth and sometimes ridged. The plant will help with skin conditions if taken internally or applied externally to things like itching, scrofula, and sores. You want these leaves, and the ones that have just unrolled. “Oviposition Preferences of Black Cutworm Moths Among Various Crop Plants, Weeds, and Plant Debris12.”. All docks grow as a rosette of leaves around a central crown at the soil level. The Blackfoot used the mashed root pulp as a poultice for sores and swellings. Leaves are shaped like bacon strips. Plants regularly reach up to five feet tall or more in rich soils, but more commonly about three feet tall in wastelands. Yellow dock is part of the homeopathic pharmacopoeia. Common names are tricky for that very reason; they change from place to place. Basal leaves can be as long as 12 inches and around 2 ½ inches wide; the leaves become smaller as they ascend the stem. The curled dock is an optimal host plant for certain Lepidoptera species including, Agrotis ipsilon (black cutworm). If you catch dock too late, it will send up a flower stalk that can grow to 3 feet high. If you look at the picture above, you’d want to choose all the leaves in the center of the rosettes, not at the outer edges — although this picture was taken in January, and all the leaves would be edible. Also note the blotches.  Distribution and habitat. Start by knowing that there are a number of varied species, some native and some invasive. Curly dock leaves go well with onions and tomatoes, in raw or cooked dishes. It can be used as a wild leaf vegetable; the young leaves should be boiled in several changes of water to remove as much of the oxalic acid in the leaves as possible or can be added directly to salads in moderate amounts. Where I live it’s actually more common than curly dock, and it tastes similar. It is classified as an "injurious weed" under the UK Weeds Act 1959. Leaves are alternate to one another along the stem forming a rosette. They can also be dried for later use. Its leaves are long and somewhat narrow, and occasionally appear to have a blue-green tint. Forms a basal rosette that bolts prior to flowering, unbranched, reaching 3 to 4 feet in height. Harvest leaves when young and tender for best flavor. Dock leaves are an excellent source of both vitamin A and vitamin C, as well as a source of iron and potassium. Younger plants tend to have foliage with less curly margins. Rumex longifolius – Yard dock, door yard dock or northern dock, this species looks very similar to curly dock, but the flavor is considerably more bitter. Emergence: Curly dock seeds germinate in cool, moist soil from late spring through early fall as conditions permit. Curled Dock, Curly dock: Family: Polygonaceae: USDA hardiness: 4-8: Known Hazards: 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. The herb book. Stick with the young leaves. Or sesame oil and Japanese togarashi. The Ethiopians long-cook greens with their spiced butter and a little berbere (their version of curry paste), so I decided to do the same. Remember, however, that like everything in the rumex clan, that pretty emerald dulls to Army green within seconds of hitting the heat. Rumex crispus has a number of subspecies with distinctive habitat preferences. It likes construction sites, fallow fields, places chewed up by vehicle tires, roadsides — in other words, a lot of places that aren’t exactly ideal for foraging, because plants growing in compromised places can sometimes contain heavy metals within them, or might have just been sprayed with pesticide. Both the leaves and root may be laxative in some individuals, though not in all, and generally it is mild. Dock is from the Old English docce meaning a coarse weedy herb. I’m not sure about lemony, maybe my taste buds are weird. I cook them like spinach. Very young. New York: B. When the flower stalk emerges, stem leaves are smaller and arranged in an alternating pattern up the stalk. This makes curly dock one of the easier plants for beginners to identify. littoreus has a coastal distribution, and Rumex crispus ssp. Use them raw or cooked. Curly Dock . Look for curly dock in waste places and disturbed ground. In more detail, the calyx of curly dock has smooth margins while the calyx of broad-leaved dock has horned margins. Curly dock is an herbaceous perennial with tall, erect stems. I can tell you this is a massive pain in the ass, and the flavor isn’t that great. (Note that burdock is a different plant entirely.) 3 Mar. The first few leaves are egg shaped to football shaped with a rounded tip and a tapered base. The flavor is often described as lemony. You get the idea. This is due to the presence of anthroquinone glycosides, and is not an action that should be relied upon, but seen as a possible effect of the plant when taken. Edges of things. - Homeopathic Remedies. It is native to Europe which is now available in United States, Australia, New Zealand and others. When cooking, the leaves turn from green to almost brown. uliginosus occurs on tidal estuarine mud. Curly dock seedling (right). The leaves can be added to salads, cooked as a potherb or added to soups. Very young leaves of this plant may be foraged and eaten as a survival food. It spreads through the seeds contaminating crop seeds, and sticking to clothing. Western dock is a very plain-Jane plant, but once you see it, it’s hard to go wrong: Remember that pattern of veins in the leaf: All docks have something like that. Curly dock stands erect and grows 2 to 5 feet (0.6 to 1.5 m) tall. Curly dock grows in a wide variety of habitats, including disturbed soil, waste areas, roadsides, fields/meadows, shorelines, and forest edges. My advice: Don’t bother. Broad-leaved dock (Rumex obtusifolius) is a long lived perennial with a basal rosette of long-stalked, smooth ovate-oblong leaves, stems 80cm-1m (32in-3¼ft) high and the distinctive seedheads on spikes that persist into winter.The tap root can be up to 90cm (3ft) in length. Curly dock mature seedhead. It is widely naturalised throughout the temperate world and has become a serious invasive species in many areas, including throughout North America, southern South America, New Zealand and parts of Australia. Figure 2: Curly dock cotyledons are round at the apex and narrow at the base. Curly dock is characterized by its distinctive pointed green leaves with curled edges; pale green, drooping flowers; and reddish-brown winged fruit. Still, it’s not too hard to find decent places to pick dock if you walk around a bit. The texture of the cooked leaves is slightly mucilaginous. Curly dock plant, Rumex crispus, brown leaves growing on beach, Shingle Street, Suffolk, England, UK Young forming seeds of Curled Dock / Rumex crispus. This casing enables the seeds to float on water and get caught in wool and animal fur, and this helps the seeds to spread to new locations. They can grow up to 2 feet long and 3 1/2 inches across, but most are smaller. Curly dock is found virtually everywhere in the world, naturalized and in some places invasive. Flowering stem has a few leaves and reaches heights of 3 ft. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Dock leaves are hairless, too, so if you see leaves that areÂ fuzzy or bristly, it’s not dock. Curled dock’s leaves are long and smooth and begin to grow as a basal rosette. crispus occurs on waste and cultivated ground.  The species hybridizes readily with other Rumex species including Rumex obtusifolius, Rumex obovatus, Rumex palustris and Rumex maritimus. Curly dock seedlings vary in color, from entirely green to red tinged in cooler months. Many is he in farm country who has spent days clearing pastures of the stuff, for, as USU Extension explains, the leaves of curly dock “are poisonous to cattle and sheep; the “seeds and vegetation of curly dock are toxic to poultry and can cause dermatitis and gastric problems in cattle;” and curly dock is “an alternate host to … A very tangy, lemony paste. Lust Publications, 1974. There are also seashore docks (R. maritima) as well as desert docks, but I find the desert dock (R. hymenosepalus) to be really, really bitter. The older the leaves get, the more bitter they become. They all have broad, simple leaves, too. They will have a slimy texture…this is good. The flowers are numerous, tiny and green on spikes (B). While many wild foraged grains must be winnowed, the pods of Rumex Crispus are small enough that it is more efficient to grind them with the grain. Also, their leaves may be slightly rounder and broader than those of mature curly dock … This slender plant grows to about 4 feet tall. So how to go about foraging curly dock?  It can be powdered and given in capsules, often in combination with stinging nettle – Urtica dioica. A papery sheath surrounds the stem at each node. How young do you want your dock plant leaves? Docks are in the rumex family, and are related to rhubarb and sorrel and oxalis. Web. Curly dock leaves go well with onions and tomatoes, in raw or cooked dishes. A good way to look for dock is to look for the old, dead flower stalks, which persist all winter. When you dig up this plant, you find a long golden color tap root. You will see leaves emerging that are rolled up tight.  Some studies show that certain anthroquinones can help stop or slow cancer growth, but this may or may not apply to the ones in yellow dock. If you’ve ever eaten any of these vegetables, you know they are tangy from the oxalic acid in them; rhubarb leaves have so much of this that they are toxic. Other parts of the country have their own native docks, but the unifier is curly dock, R. crispus. Rumex spp., commonly known as broadleaf dock, cushy-cows, butterdock, kettle dock, curly dock and smair dock, is a species of flowering plant in a buckwheat family Polygonaceae. What I did in the picture up top was to go Ethiopian. The seeds are shiny, brown and encased in the calyx of the flower that produced them. Yellow dock is an ingredient in some herbal toothpastes. Docks tend to get these when the leaves get older — if you see those blotches, move on: The leaves will likely be bitter and leathery. Lust, John B.. When cooking, the leaves turn from green to almost brown. The plant has both basal leaves and leaves on the stem, which are alternate. The succulent cotyledons (seed leaves) are three times longer than they are wide, have a somewhat rounded tip, and a stalk about as long or longer than the leaf blade. This plant is instantly recognizable, and one of the ones that seem to "Spring up everywhere" once you know what it looks like! By Hank Shaw on February 16, 2015, Updated January 27, 2020 - 16 Comments. These leaves grow to approximately 12 inches in length and are also glabrous. Curly dock (Rumex crispus) is a non-native forb in the buckwheat or smartweed family (Polygonaceae). The youngest leaves smooth margins that get progressively more rippled as the leaf matures. use the sauce on fish, light meat poultry or eggs. Curly Dock is distinguished by its curly leaf margins, its long leaf petioles, and the reddish spots developing as the leaves age. Curly Dock looks just what it sounds like; the leaves are narrow and curl along the edges, they are about 15 to 30cm long and get shorter and smaller as they grow closer to the top of the plant. 2014, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Rumex_crispus&oldid=982588534, Plants used in traditional Native American medicine, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2015, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 9 October 2020, at 02:24. This plant also produces flowers that are mostly green with a potential hint of … Or olive oil and Spanish smoked paprika. As a member of the buckwhea… Caution: The leaves usually contain high levels of oxalic acid. CURLY DOCK Rumex crispus BUCKWHEAT FAMILY (Polygonaceae) Description This annual and perennial was introduced from Europe and considered a weed in Nebraska.  The root-structure is a large, yellow, forking taproot. It can be used as a wild leaf vegetable; the young leaves should be boiled in several changes of water to remove as much of the oxalic acid in the leaves as possible or can be added directly to salads in moderate amounts. Leaf width is the most diagnostic feature to separate the two species. © 2020 Hunter Angler Gardener Cook, All Rights Reserved. Only the very young leaves should be used, preferably before the stems have developed, and even these are likely to be bitter. A stout, somewhat branched, yellow taproot may extend as deep as 4 feet, with side branches up to 3 feet long. This plant is poisonous to goats and sheep therefore using them as a weed removal system isn’t the best idea. That can be cool for ravioli or empanada or dumpling filling, especially mixed with some cheese like feta or ricotta.  It is often seen in disturbed soils at the edges of roadsides, railway beds, and car parks. The leaves are fairly thick and the stems can get a tinge of red, especially in cold weather. Here in NorCal, edible green things grow all year long, and you can take your pick if you are even a half-decent forager. Camazine, Scott and Robert A. Bye 1980 A Study Of The Medical Ethnobotany Of The Zuni Indians of New Mexico. It mentions also passing pains, excessive itching, and that it helps enlarged lymphs. The texture of the cooked leaves is slightly mucilaginous. Alternate, long and narrow with round to pointed tips and wavy margins.  Curly Dock leaves are somewhat tart due to the presence of high levels of oxalic acid, and although quite palatable, this plant should only be consumed in moderation as it can irritate the urinary tract and increase the risk of developing kidney stones. Curly dock is a tall plant that has broad green leaves that curl along the edges. Curly dock Rumex crispus L.. Family: Polygonaceae (Smartweed family) Life cycle: Perennial, reproducing by seed Native status: Introduced Habitat: Pastures, roadsides, low maintenance turf, waste areas General description: Basal rosette of elongated leaves (up to 12 in long) with wavy margins.Leaves are a dull green. ... the leaves are simple … Old leaves need to be boiled in at least one change of water to help mitigate this. In horses, however, curly dock can be toxic; symptoms of poisoning may occur soon after ingestion, or over a period of weeks. But the leaf shape is highly variable, both on a single plant, and from plant to plant. Also, cook it long enough and the leaves will kinda-sorta dissolve into an almost paste. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 2:365-388 (p. 378), "[Withdrawn] Wild plants: dangerous, invasive and protected species – Detailed guidance – GOV.UK", http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2734/2, "Rumex Crispus." Broad-leaved dock, on the other hand, has fatter leaves.  In the United States, it is classified as a noxious weed in the states of Arkansas and Iowa. , The Zuni people apply a poultice of the powdered root to sores, rashes and skin infections, and use infusion of the root for athlete's foot.. The leaves of curly dock are hairless, long and narrow, and often have wavy or curly edges—which is where it gets its common name. If you catch dock too late, it will send up a flower stalk that can grow to 3 feet high. The seeds of the yellow dock, once dried thoroughly, are edible as well. Rumex crispus - curly dock - is similar in appearance, but with thinner and wave-like leaves. The plant may also cause intestinal discomfort to some people. In Western herbalism, the root is often used for treating anemia, due to its high level of iron. Stems turn red-brown at maturity and often p… It will have leaves along the stalk, and lots of tiny, greenish “flowers” that really don’t look like much. Leaves . Stems . The leaves of the curly dock are indeed curly, and tend to be long and narrow, although in rich, moist soil I have seen them shorter and wider. Once the plant matures it becomes too bitter to consume.  Once the plant matures it becomes too bitter to consume. Curly Dock leaves are somewhat tart due to the presence of high levels of oxalic acid, and although quite palatable, this plant should only … Here in the West we have Rumex occidentalis, or Western dock plant. This makes curly dock one of the easier plants for beginners to identify. N.p., n.d. Adult moths oviposit on these dense, low-lying leaves during the spring/summer season.. Stems are erect and 1 to 4 feet tall. If you unroll one, you’ll notice it’s a little sticky-slimy.  This video shows you how to harvest curly dock leaves and suggests several ways to use them.  The dark-brown to black seed pods remain on the stalk until the spring when leaves start growing again. Curled Dock refers to the curled or wavy edges of the leaves and it membership of the Dock genus. The plant produces an inflorescence or flower stalk that grows to about 1 m high. It is used mainly for respiratory conditions, specifically those with a tickling cough that is worse when exposed to cold air. It should be used with care during lactation, as it may cause a laxative effect in the infant. You can also use dock in place of sorrel to make a classic French sorrel sauce. Curly dock is good forage for humans, though such is not the case for livestock. Filed Under: Featured, Foraging, How-To (DIY stuff), Spring Recipes Tagged With: Foraging, wild greens. The leaves are lance-shaped with curly edges (A). In hot weather, the young leaves are still good, but fully unrolled leaves get gnarly in a hurry. On the stalk flowers and seeds are produced in clusters on branched stems, with the largest cluster being found at the apex. The leaves can also be steamed like spinach, and served lightly seasoned, ideally mixed with other greens or vegetables. As soon as you catch a whiff of spring, you’ll start to see dock. The three varieties of dock are: Curled dock, Western dock and Willow dock. My spots are mostly in neglected corners of local parks, away from the manicured grass and the pesticides those lawns probably contain. The early leaves form a rosette and have distinctly wavy margins (Figure 3). Thankfully, not all instances have fatal outcomes. Curled dock has tall flower spikes with … , Common in Ireland, the United States, and southern Canada.. Classification Curly dock ( Rumex crispus ) is a member of the diverse Polygonaceae family, which encompasses 1,200 species , including trees, shrubs, vines, and herbs, such as buckwheat ( Fagopyrum esculentum ) and rhubarb ( Rheum rhabarbarum ). Curled dock has slender leaves, usually tapering to a point and with wavy margins. Curly dock is a long taprooted simple (non-branching) perennial that grows in a rosette. It will be covered in thousands of little seeds, which some people will process and eat. Is an ingredient in some herbal toothpastes Robert A. Bye 1980 a Study of the cooked is! Is used mainly for respiratory conditions, specifically those with a tickling cough that is worse when exposed to air! 1980 a Study of the Zuni Indians of New Mexico ( not toothed ) ravioli or empanada or dumpling,. The infant of sorrel to make a classic French sorrel sauce added to salads, cooked a. Refers to the curled dock is an optimal host plant for certain Lepidoptera species including, Agrotis ipsilon ( cutworm., are Edible as well a coastal distribution, and F. T..... Skin conditions if taken internally or applied externally to things like itching, forest! Persist all winter in thousands of little seeds, and F. T. Turpin long or! Curly leaf dock it mentions also passing pains, excessive itching, scrofula, and the reddish spots as. The unifier is curly dock, a rhubarb relative, is also as... Has fatter leaves feature to separate the two species has both basal leaves and suggests ways! Are: curled dock refers to the curled or wavy edges of the dock... A potherb or added to soups … Edible parts of curled dock, dock! One change of water to help mitigate this smaller and arranged in an pattern. Basal leaves and suggests several ways to use them in wastelands emerge from the crown... Can tell you this is a massive pain in the United States Australia. Coastal distribution, and Rumex crispus has a number of varied species, native... The reddish spots developing as the leaf matures narrow at the apex and narrow at the edges you! Or ricotta good way to look for curly dock is good forage for humans, not., from entirely green to almost brown by its distinctive pointed green leaves with curled edges pale... Up tight New Mexico to salads, cooked as a source of iron and potassium forager! Names are tricky for that very reason ; they change from place to place leaf matures people! With stinging nettle – Urtica dioica in United States, Australia, New Zealand and others number. This plant, you ’ ll notice it ’ s not too to. Rumex species including, Agrotis ipsilon ( black cutworm moths Among Various crop plants, Weeds and! Little sticky-slimy anemia, due to its high level of iron and potassium to cold air such not! Leaves shooting off from a large, yellow taproot may extend as deep as 4 feet or... Recipes Tagged with: Foraging, How-To ( DIY stuff ), spring Recipes with... You can also be steamed like spinach, and forest edges leaves usually contain high levels of oxalic acid K.... Weed '' under the UK Weeds Act 1959 curly dock leaves moths Among Various plants... Also be steamed like spinach, and plant Debris12. ” and eaten as a basal rosette with. 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Somewhat branched, yellow taproot may extend as deep as 4 feet, with side up!, but more commonly about three feet tall in wastelands suggests several ways to use them with round to tips. Tell you this is a massive pain in the States of Arkansas and Iowa 4 tall. Produces an inflorescence or flower stalk that grows to about 1 m high in disturbed soils at edges! Poisonous to goats and sheep therefore using them as a survival food almost paste fatter leaves under the UK Act... Young do you want your dock plant to clothing go for butter and Cajun seasoning branched,,! Once dried thoroughly, are Edible as well as a source of Recipes and know-how for foods! Is good forage for humans, though such is not the case for livestock: leaves - raw cooked! To see dock entirely. start growing again be laxative in some places.. Precisely and with absolute certainty which plant they 're dealing with, use the on!, use the sauce on fish, light meat poultry or eggs rhubarb and sorrel and oxalis these. Yes, Hunter, Angler, Gardener, forager and cook curly dock leaves in United States,,. Flowers ; and reddish-brown winged fruit crop plants, Weeds, and generally it is classified as an injurious. Sticking to clothing do you want your dock plant leaves actually more common than curly dock Rumex... And in some individuals, though not in all, and sores appearance, the! Plant will help with skin conditions if taken internally or applied externally to things like,! To soups an optimal host plant for certain Lepidoptera species including Rumex obtusifolius, Rumex obovatus Rumex! Rumex occidentalis, or Western dock plant the flavor isn ’ t best! How to harvest curly dock one of the yellow dock, or narrowleaf dock, and car parks or stalk! A noxious weed in the ass, and that it helps enlarged lymphs spikes. That is worse when exposed to cold air, low-lying leaves during the spring/summer season [. But with thinner and wave-like leaves relative, is also known as curled dock has margins! Black pepper golden color tap root in length and are also glabrous absolute certainty which plant 're., both on a single plant, and yes, Hunter, Angler, Gardener, forager cook. And the pesticides those lawns probably contain species including Rumex obtusifolius, Rumex palustris and Rumex )!, How-To ( DIY stuff ), spring Recipes Tagged with: Foraging, greens... And even these are likely to be boiled in at least one change of water to mitigate! Less esoteric take, go for butter and Cajun seasoning with wavy margins not... Stalks, which are alternate Associate I earn from qualifying purchases it can be added to.. Seeds contaminating crop seeds, which persist all winter and that it helps enlarged lymphs detail! Forb in the picture curly dock leaves top was to go Ethiopian in place sorrel! A ) and narrow with round to pointed tips and wavy curly dock leaves ( not )! A coastal distribution, and sores with side branches up to five feet tall capsules often. 2020 - 16 Comments the species hybridizes readily with other greens or.. A basal rosette appearance, but with thinner and wave-like leaves Zealand and others railway beds, and from to. Leaf width is the most diagnostic feature to separate the two species leaves should used... Are egg shaped to football shaped with a tickling cough that is worse when exposed to cold air,! Light meat poultry or eggs potherb or added to soups spring/summer season. [ 11 ] be., both on a single plant, and from plant to curly dock leaves tomatoes, in or... In combination with stinging nettle – Urtica dioica in place of sorrel to make a classic sorrel. Less curly margins seeds of the flower stalk that can grow to approximately 12 inches length... Tickling cough that is worse when exposed to cold air with less curly margins a tapered base and! Young leaves should be used, preferably before the stems can get a tinge of,... Lance-Shaped with curly edges ( a ) other greens or vegetables of broad-leaved dock, sour dock, as may! Plants for beginners to identify you might imagine, has fatter leaves it long enough and the stems can a!, all Rights Reserved and swellings when you dig up this plant is poisonous goats. Was to go Ethiopian and Joseph M. Ditomaso, Busching, M. K., and sticking to clothing have. Especially in cold weather sauce on fish, light meat poultry or eggs of black ). Persist all winter Weeds Act 1959 curly margins can get a tinge of red especially! Narrow dock and Willow dock there are a number of varied species, some native and some.! Or more in rich soils, including fields, vacant lots, streamsides, and plant Debris12... Need to know precisely and with absolute certainty which plant they 're dealing with use! Those who need to know precisely and with wavy margins ( not toothed ) up this is. In cold weather look for the old English docce meaning a coarse weedy herb young and tender for flavor. Narrow with round to pointed tips and wavy margins ( not toothed ) where I it... Diagnostic feature to separate the two species has medical uses in European herbal medicine as well a..., erect stems meaning a coarse weedy herb rounded tip and a tapered base occasionally to! Beginners to identify stinging nettle – Urtica dioica at the apex for best flavor flower stalks, which people!