Mêl Cilgwenyn Premium Wildflower Seeds

Salad Burnet

Sanguisorba minor

Best Time to See: May, June, July, August, September

Habitat: Grassland

Colour: Green, Pink

Its leaves are famous for smelling of cucumber if crushed or walked upon, and this plant lives up to its name as a popular addition to salads and summer drinks.

Salad burnet is a low-growing herb of chalk and limestone grassland that produces rounded, reddish flower heads from May to September. Salad Burnet also has a respectable history, called a favourite herb by Francis Bacon, and was brought to the ‘New World’ with the first English colonists, even getting special mention by Thomas Jefferson.


The leaves of Salad burnet comprise up to 12 pairs of rounded, toothed leaflets, and form a rosette at the base of the flower stem. Its rounded flower heads are reddish and speckled.

Habitat and distribution

It is mainly found in Wales and England. Salad Burnet can be found in grassland. Can be found throughout the UK, but particularly widespread in England and Wales.

Did you know?
  • Young burnet leaves are used as an ingredient in summer drinks, salads, dressings, and sauces having a flavour described as "mildly cucumber, a bit tart, a little hot" and is considered interchangeable with mint leaves in some recipes, depending on the intended effect. Typically, the youngest leaves are used, as they tend to become bitter as they age.
  • Salad burnet has in the past been used medicinally in Europe to control bleeding.
  • Salad burnet has the same medicinal qualities as medicinal burnet (Sanguisorba officinalis). It was used as a tea to relieve diarrhea in the past.
Conservation status

Common throughout Wales and England and some coastal areas of Scotland.