A Favorite Weed - Oxalis debilis
Also known as pink sorrel is a pretty weed that has been showing up more and more in
our area. The lovely five-petal blossoms grow above mounded clover-like leaves. The blooms close up in times of drought and at night. Pink sorrel is related to five other Florida sorrel’s including yellow woodsorrel (Oxalis stricta), which is also called lucky clover. Pink sorrel grows anywhere and everywhere. One small plant produces as many as 5,000 seeds a year in tiny okra-like pods that pop explosively at maturity scattering the seeds widely. It also reproduces by rhizomes and is difficult to eradicate unless young plants are pulled up before they form dense mats from the rhizomes. It is a serious problem for ornamental plant growers so if you like it keep it confined to a pot or a small area. The leaves have a sour, slightly lemony flavor. I like to add a handful along with the pretty blossoms to a salad. Not too many, however, because they contain oxalic acid, the chemical compound also present in spinach, rhubarb, parsley, kale and other foods including chocolate.