Tag Archives: curly dock

P.E.M.U. 0001 – Curly Dock (Rumex crispus)


New to P.E.M.U.? Start here: https://bigpigblog.com/2015/03/20/p-e-m-u-project/ Do the work!! Use a good field guide for identification and start your journey. Items in “bold” are first hand experience.

This week’s featured plant is a favorite spring edible of mine and probably growing right in your yard or close to it.


Curly Dock, Yellow Dock (Rumex crispus)

Buckwheat Family – Page 113 of Botany in a Day – Elpel

Identification – Page 85 of Wildflowers of Tennessee – Horn & Cathcart

  • Wavy leaf margins
  • Small green flowers

P – oisonous

  • Curly dock contains oxalic acid and should be eaten in limited quantities. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid it.

E – dible

  • Leaves (young) – raw, cooked, soup, or dried
  • Petioles – raw or cooked
  • Flower stalks – raw or cooked
  • Seeds – grain, sprouts, or coffee substitute

M – edicinal

  • Iron supplement
  • Bile stimulant
  • Anti-diarrheal
  • Laxative
  • Skin compress – psoriasis
  • Sting relief  for nettles

U – seful

  • Dye
  • Drinking straw


While it’s sourness is a great addition to salads, cooked Curly Dock is outstanding with equal parts tomatoes and onions (recipe from Nyerge’s book).


Strawberry Curly Dock pies…


I got sidetracked from my PEMU project last week, but building the BUSAR team had to get done.

It may take me a few runs to figure out the format, citing, etc, and where I want to take the project. There are plenty of great foraging blogs and PFAF’s database is top shelf. For now, I think my role in the green kingdom is as a motivator to get out and actually try stuff. If I have tried it, it will be in bold letters.

“Do work!!” the motto of my old fight gym, pertains to foraging too, so read up in Thayer’s or Kallas’ book for great edible info and most herbal medicine books will have Curly Dock listed.

Use the PEMU template https://bigpigblog.com/2015/03/20/p-e-m-u-project/ to start your own journey and you will be amazed at the bounty that surrounds us.


PFAF – http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Rumex+crispus

Eat The Weeds – http://www.eattheweeds.com/rumex-ruminations/

Foraging season ramps up…


Ramps..spring beauties..trout lilies..toothwort..curly dock..chickweed..dandelion..redbud flowers..watercress..violets..wild onions..It is that time of year.

As my neighbor was mowing his yard, one of my buddies joked with me this afternoon as I was gathering tonight’s salad.. “Why you picking weeds when you have lettuce in the garden?

He knows why, because he is the same way, shunning regular produce if he can go gather some greens.

There is something deep inside my primitive DNA that makes foraging for “wild” salads feel natural. No pesticides, no genetic modification, and they are loaded with tons of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Starting this time of year, my focus shifts to my chlorophyll laden friends.

Thankfully, my hunting and gathering forays are counter-balanced by my gifted wife that loves to cook.

Tonight’s meal was fresh caught crappie, pan seared, with lemon basil butter, over sauteed ramps with shallots, on a bed of wild rice and quinoa pilaf. Chickweed, curly  dock, dandelion greens and buds, plantain, wild onions, wild lettuce, and redbud flowers, made up the “wild” salad and was topped with some crushed black walnuts.




Fresh, free food that is popping up everywhere. Stay tuned as we are finalizing the dates on our foraging classes.