Oxalis stricta

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaOxalidaceaeOxalisOxalis stricta


An erect annual of cultivated ground, disturbed areas and paths, in shaded or semi-shaded situations. It spreads by seed or occasionally by underground rhizomes. Seed is freely set by self-pollination, and forcibly ejected from the capsules over a distance of up to two metres. Lowland.



World Distribution

Native of N. America and E. Asia; extensively naturalised in temperate Europe.

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 6

Moisture (Ellenberg): 5

Reaction (Ellenberg): 6

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 5

Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.8

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 15.7

Annual Precipitation (mm): 895

Height (cm): 40

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary

Therophyte (annual land plant)



Clonality - primary

Rhizome shortly creeping

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 396

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 27

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 4

Atlas Change Index: -0.09

JNCC Designations


Atlas text references

Atlas (95d)
Lovett-Doust L, Mackinnon A, Lovett-Doust J
1985.  Biology of Canadian weeds. 71. Oxalis stricta L., O. corniculata L., O. dillenii Jacq. ssp. dillenii and O. dillenii Jacq. ssp. filipes (Small) Eiten. Canadian Journal of Plant Science. 65:691-709.
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Meusel H, Jäger E, Rauschert S, Weinert E
1978.  Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 2. 2 vols.
Rich TCG, Jermy AC
1998.  Plant crib 1998.
Watson (1997)
Young DP
1958.  Oxalis in the British Isles. Watsonia. 4:51-69.