This member of the Rhubarb family is grown in small quantities by some market gardeners, more or less as a catch crop, between the rows of fruit trees and bushes. The clumps are planted 1 to 1 1/2 ft. apart in rows about 2 ft. wide, and a deep, moist, loamy soil is preferred. Under good tillage the leaves attain a large size, and are picked for market in the same way as those of Spinach. The finest foliage develops in moist and partially shaded positions, and once a plantation is established it will last for a few years. Propagation is effected by division of the clumps, or plants may be raised from seeds sown thinly in drills where the plants are to remain.

Belleville Sorrel (Rumex Acetosa).

Fig. 516. - Belleville Sorrel (Rumex Acetosa).

There are several varieties; one of the best, and that favoured by the French market gardeners, is known as the Broad-leaved Belleville (fig. 516), the leaves of which are very large and luscious, and of a pleasantly acid flavour. Other kinds are the Round-leaved Sorrel (R. scutatus), and the Mountain Sorrel (R. montanus). A form of the last-named, called Maiden or Dutch Sorrel, rarely flowers or seeds; it is now much grown in France. Once established, it produces crops of fine leaves for several years.