This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V18", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
A splendid subject for table decoration, hitherto (so far as I know) unused, may be found in every garden, but its season of perfection is nearly past. It has stared me in the face for years and years, but I never thought of using it until lately, when "stern Necessity's supreme command" led me to hunt for every scrap of suitable stuff on the premises. The new subject is our old friend of the kitchen garden and salad bowl, the Common Sorrel, Rumex acetosa, which now presents huge, ugly, club-like spikes of purplish red inflorescence of a comparatively coarse and unattractive nature. But, unpromising as it looks, it needs but to be judiciously used, and it becomes a most valuable aid in the light filigree work which is so much needed in the dressing of vases, and will take its part admirably with grasses and ferns to make a delicious cloudy atmosphere around and above gay flowers. Try it and be convinced. Every one of the great ugly bunches will furnish fifty light sprays of grasslike inflorescence of a peculiar color, differing from, yet harmonizing with all kinds of flowers, and so distinct it is when set off with bright green that it might be employed as the dominant furniture in some instances.- Gardener's Magazine.