Red Sorrel


sheep sorrel, sour-grass, indian cane, field sorrel, horse sorrel, cow sorrel, toad sorrel, mountain sorrel

Rumex acetosella

Red sorrel is a perennial weed of low-maintenance sites characterized by dry, infertile and often low pH soils. Red sorrel will survive at neutral pH but is usually not as prevalent because the turf will be more competitive under these conditions.

Red sorrel has a low creeping (rhizomes) growth habit and is also quite viable from seed. The distinctive leaves of red sorrel have a velvety texture and are arrow-head or bullet-shaped with two elongated lobes (dog-ears) at the base. The inconspicuous 'red dust' flowers of red sorrel are typically present in June and can persist through early July.

  • Crops Affected: turf


    Red sorrel is easily managed with judicious fertilizer applications and consistent mowing at 3+ inches. Dense turf is a very effective deterrent. Red sorrel is often an indication of acidic soils. Liming toward a neutral pH will help encourage the turf and remove red sorrels main advantage.

    Similar Species

    Field Bindweed