Herb of the knife, lesser pimpernel, algáfita or grass of the hammers. These are just a few of the many common names given to the Minor leech. But what is this plant? It is a vegetable belonging to the same family as roses, despite not looking anything like these popular and romantic flowers. Its flowers are smaller and less impressive, but instead It has medicinal and culinary properties that common roses lack.
Due to the multiple uses that can be given to the Minor leech y its easy maintenance, It is worth that you inform yourself about it. If you want to know more about this curious vegetable, I recommend that you keep reading. We will talk about its characteristics, where to find it, the care it requires and the applications it has.
Characteristics of the Sanguisorba minor
When we talk about Minor leechwe refer to a species of biennial plant belonging to the family of the Rosaceae. It can reach a height of up to four hands. It has leaves made up of four to twelve pairs of round to elliptical toothed leaflets whose size is similar. The basal leaves, as usual in this family, rosette.
As for the flowers of this curious plant, they are usually crowded at the end of the stem and are small in size. Its color is usually green with a purple or red tint. In addition, they are arranged in a head. Those flowers that are in the upper part of the vegetable are female. Instead, the flowers at the base are male.
Also noteworthy is the fruit of the Minor leech. This is very small and dry, apart from being reticulated, a little woody and crested in an irregular shape. This plant usually blooms from May to September and it is found in rainfed meadows throughout Europe. We can usually find this flower in fields and on roadsides.
Many probably already know this flower, as it receives many different names. The most common in Spanish are the following:
- Fine arnica
- Without initials
- Trellis grass
- Gangrene herb
- balloon grass
- Throat herb
- Rumination herb
- Gypsy girl
- Knife herb
- Cuckoo grass
- Bludgeon herb
- Kidney herb
- Italian salad
- Ladder grass
- Grass ge
- Cavaller’s Enzyme
- Lesser fruiting pimpernel
- Greater Pimpernel fruticosa
- Giant Pimpernel
- Lesser Pimpernel
- Wild pimpernel
- Pimpinella minor
- Lesser Sanguisorba
- Blade Yerba
- weed of the enjaretadura
- Fine rue
- weed of the blows
Where is the Sanguisorba minor found?
The Minor leech it is widespread throughout the world. We can find it in central, western and southern Europe, in Southeast Asia and Northeast Africa. Despite its wide extension, This plant is native to the European continent. According to historical data, it was brought to the New World with the arrival of the English settlers.
But where exactly can we see this curious vegetable? It is usually found on roadsides and wastelands, in the middle of weeds, on stony soils, in sunny or open environments, in Paleozoic terrain, in meadows, in wet grasslands, etc. This great variety of habitats occupied by the Sanguisorba minor it is because It is not a very demanding plant when it comes to its basic needs. Therefore, it is also an easy flower to care for.
When it comes to cultivating Minor leechIt is very important to know the basic needs of this plant and the care it requires. We are going to list below what they are:
- Temperature: It needs to be in full sun to be able to fully develop. Despite preferring the heat, the Minor leech it is capable of withstanding up to six degrees below zero.
- Ground: It tolerates alkaline soils quite well, it can even grow in dry and nutrient-poor soils, thus considerably facilitating its cultivation.
- Irrigation: When watering, it is best to do it in moderation and avoid waterlogging the soil. It should be noted that this plant is very resistant to drought.
- Fertilizer: It is not a picky vegetable with fertilizer. However, the compost must be sufficient for the Minor leech can bloom vigorously.
- Multiplication: It can be multiplied by cuttings at any time of the year.
It is quite common to use the Minor leech for vegetating steep slopes and dry slopes in coastal areas. However, its applications are not only given at a decorative and environmental level. It also stands out for its culinary uses. It is common to use this plant as an ingredient in dressings and salads, it has a flavor comparable to cucumber and it can be used as a substitute for mint leaves in some recipes, depending on the desired effect. Younger leaves are usually used, as they become more bitter as they age. It should be noted that the Minor leech It is one of the seven original ingredients in the famous Frankfurt green sauce.
Also on a medicinal level, this vegetable is very useful. It has the same qualities as the Sanguisorba officinalisknown as medicinal pimpernel. In the past it was used as an infusion to relieve diarrhea. Even today, different types of infusions are produced with the roots of this plant. Helps relieve throat irritation if swallowed or accelerate wound healing if poured over them. In fact, that is why it is called «Sanguisorba«, Which is a derivative of the Latin«blood“Which means” blood “for its ability to stop bleeding.
The most common medicinal uses are as follows:
- Acute diarrhea, whether of bacterial origin or not.
- Oropharyngeal conditions: Stomatitis or pharyngitis.
- Dermal conditions: Dermatitis, skin lesions, seborrheic dermatitis, psoriasis or skin ulcer.
We can therefore say that the Minor leech It is a small miracle of nature. Not only does it serve to decorate and flavor some foods, but it also has several very useful medicinal properties. Even offering so many advantages, it is a very resistant plant and easy to maintain. What more can we ask for?