Burnet, Salad burnet, Sanguisorba minor

salad burnet

Another small salad herb with huge nutritional value! The dainty leaves of this pretty plant tastes like cucumber and is used fresh in salads, herb butters, cheese, vinegars, marinades, beverages and makes a pretty garnish. It is very nutritious and has medicinal value.

The burnet family (sanguisorba) has 30 members, two are commonly known as kitchen and medicinal herb, sanguisorba minor the salad burnet and sanguisorba officinalis, commonly known as great burnet. Medicinally they are used interchangably.

Why is Salad Burnet so Healthy?

  • Burnet contains flavonoids which have antioxidant properties, These help neutralize chronic disease causing free radicals and therefore act anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer.
  • Glycosides found in burnet have numerous health benefits such as lowering cholesterol, are good for bone health, strengthening the immune system stimulation and anticancer.
  • Another constituent of salad burnet is beta-sitosterol; thought to reduce LDL cholesterol and inhibit the growth of cancerous tumors.

What are the Medical uses of Burnet?

  • In China, roots of the greater burnet is used to make medicines.
  • It was used against plague.
  • Burnet leaves have the ability to reduce bleeding, both external and internal. The Latin scientific name, Poterium sanguisorba or Sanguisorba minor, translates as “drink up blood” referring to its astringent qualities. 
  • Burnet leaves also have astringent and anti-inflammatory properties. They help destroy disease causing organisms in the stomach. Burnet leaves and roots are used to solve digestive problems.
  • It is sold as a supplement for women’s health.

Burnet is not toxic.

Burnet in the Garden:

Burnet is easy to grow. It is a clumping perennial about 50 cm across and 30 cm high. It is a pretty and tidy mounding plant and looks great in containers too. It makes a good edging plant. Cutting back the blossoms will produce plenty of tender new leaves.

Common Names:  Burnet, Salad Burnet, Small Burnet, Garden Burnet, Bibernelle, Pimpernelle

Family: Caryophyllaceae

Height + Width:

Frost Hardiness: Hardy in Katoomba




Country of Origin: Eastern Cape of South Africa


Common names: African Dream Root, Undlela Ziimhlophe (White Ways/Paths), Ubulawu



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