FLORA OF ICELAND elements: Rumex acetosa, common sorrel

Rumex acetosa; the Common Sorrel is indeed very common. It can be found almost everywhere on Iceland except for the extreme highlands and mountains. It prefers grassy well fertilized soils and can thus be found in areas affected by human civilization. However, it also grows in less favorable areas like highland heathers. The second photo shown was shot near Hveravellir in open rocky highland country. These plants are more dwarfed in comparison to those growing in lowland meadows. A characteristic trait of this species is the backward pointing lobes of the leaves.
It is a member of the Dock family (Polygonaceae). The Icelandic name of this species is Túnsúra.

Leaf shapes of the common sorrel species on Iceland:

Rumex acetosa Rumex acetosella
Rumex longifolius Oxyria digyna

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A brief introduction to Iceland plants
Text & Photographs by Dick Vuijk - unless stated otherwise

A plant at Hveravellir
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A plant at Hveravellir

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