POTERIUM sanguisorba

Salad Burnet, Lesser Burnet



Height: 10-15" (25-40 cm)
Flowering Time: Summer, Autumn
Flower Colour: Red

Botanical Classification:


Angiospermae (Angiosperms)
Subclass: Dicotyledonae (Dicotyledons)
Superorder: Rosidae (Rose Superorder)
Order: Rosales (Rose Order)
Family: Rosaceae (Rose Family)
Genus: Sanguisorba (Burnet)
Species: minor (lesser)
Sanguisorba minor

Sanguisorba minor is a distinctive wildflower, although it is not a conspicuous plant, reaching only about a foot high in open places amongst grasses, especially in chalky areas. It has a basal rosette of toothed pinnate leaves, from which arise thin woody, often reddish, stems. These bear the unusual flowers in rounded heads. They do not have any petals, but are coloured dark red above by the female 'flowers' which have only feathery stigmas (which open first), and pinky yellow at the bottom by the male 'flowers', which are long red filaments with yellow pollen sacs on the ends.

Sanguisorba minor has been used in traditional medicine to treat skin complaints.

Salad Burnet is probably so-called because the plant smells of cucumber when crushed, and was once used in salads and to flavour drinks.


Harvesting and Growing from Seed:


(83 days)

Seed Pod There is no seed pod. The seeds make up a dense seedhead.

Seed The seed is a large woody ridged oval. There are several seeds on the seedhead.

Seedling The seedleaves are rounded. the first true leaves are trefoil.

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