This section is from the book "Commercial Gardening Vol4", by John Weathers (the Editor). Also available from Amazon: Commercial Gardening, A Practical & Scientific Treatise For Market Gardeners.
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.
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.