Nodding Wood-sorrel

Nodding Wood-sorrel / Oxalis pes-caprae / عرق الليمون - حميضة

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Status: Very common

Nodding Wood-sorrel is a geophyte plant belongs to the Oxalidaceae Family. Stems are sparsely pubescent; shoots arise from a short vertical stem that is attached to a pale brown underground bulb. Each bulb is capable of producing over 20 small whitish bulblets each year. Leaves arise from an enlarged basal stem tip, and are alternate, rosette, and compound, trifoliate. Flowers are bright yellow and are arranged in umbel-like inflorescences; shaped like a funnel. These inflorescences generally have fewer than 20 flowers each.

Flowers are hermaphrodite, flowering periods: December, January, March, and February. Fruits are Capsule.

Ecology: Disturbed habitats, it widespread as a garden weed, and belongs to the plurureginalbor-trop chorotype.

Uses:  The plant has been used in various ways as a source of oxalic acid, as food, and in folk medicine. The raw bulbs have been used to deal with tapeworm and possibly other worms. The plant has been used as a diuretic. The lateral underground runners, which tend to be fleshy, have been eaten raw or boiled and served with milk. The golden petals can be used to produce a yellow dye.

Distributions:  It is Indigenous to South Africa, and grows in Palestine as an invasive species. It distributed in almost all ecosystems in Palestine, specially Mediterranean Woodlands and Shrublands.

Other names: African wood-sorrel, Bermuda buttercup, Cape sorrel, English weed, goat's-foot, sourgrass. 

IUCN red list status: not evaluated

Local status: least concern