Getting plant materials from one state to another state

Oxalis corniculata by Joaquim F. P.

TheGardenLady recently received a request from a stranger who said he is a research chemist studying the benefits of Yellow Sorrel (Oxalis Corniculata). He requested some dried yellow sorrel to do this research.

Yellow Sorrel is considered a noxious weed in many people’s gardens, but is considered a herbal remedy by those who believe in the use of herbal medicines.  TheGardenLady would never recommend taking any plant unless it was a known food or a medicine recommended by your physician. I hope that some of these folk medicines would be studied in greater depth in the hopes that modern pharmacopoeia could use them. But until I have medical recommendations, TheGardenLady would NEVER suggest folk medicine remedies for  use. And the FDA seems to imply that Oxalis Corniculata may be toxic.

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Eradicating Oxalis Corniculata

Oxalis corniculata by (on flickr)
Oxalis corniculata by (on flickr)

TheGardenLady received this question from Gay.

What do you recommend to eradicate Oxalis in coastal climate (SF Bay area)? This is not the ornamental type, it is invasive with a succulent flower stem and yellow blossom.

Oxalis – Oxalis corniculata L. , yellow wood sorrel is an invasive plant in California.

This GardenLady always tries to first recommend the safest method of  weed removal, which is hand pulling. If you aren’t overwhelmed with too many Oxalis on your property always try hand pulling first. Now the problem with oxalis is that it has a long tap root. Besides these tap roots it also sends out stolons. A stolon is a shoot that bends to the ground or that grows horizontally above the ground and produces roots and shoots at the nodes. And it has rhizomes. A rhizome is a horizontal, usually underground stem that often sends out roots and shoots from its nodes. Plus Oxalis makes seeds. How is that for insuring species survival? So to eradicate the oxalis with all its alternative methods of growing into another plant, one has to get rid of all of its roots, stolons and rhizomes before it sets seed. That is very difficult to do. But one can try. If your soil is not rocky you can use a manual asparagus picker to get to the bottom of the tape root.  I hope you can still purchase these manual asparagus pickers. They have a handle and sort of look like a long screw driver with a V at the end which is what you use to cut. However,TheGardenLady does not know where to buy them. Mine is an antique from my parents’ farm.

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