Isn’t this a pretty flowering shamrock?

Okay, it’s not really a shamrock.  It does belong to a family of plants known as ‘false shamrocks’.

Since I can’t grow real shamrocks in my desert garden, I just like to pretend that my pink- flowering one is the real deal.


This plant that masquerades as a shamrock in my vegetable garden is actually Pink Wood Sorrel, (Oxalis crassipes ‘Rosea’). 

I received this lovely plant from a fellow blogger, who gardens in Oregon.

I saw this beautiful flowering plant on one of her and she kindly sent me some a few years ago that she had divided from her plant.

Would this plant grow in my desert garden, I wondered?

Well, it not only grew…


It has thrived!

Hardy to zones 5 – 10, it flowers in spring and fall.  During the hot summer, it goes dormant but quickly grows back.  

Because it has done so well, I have divided it and place it in other partly shady spots in my vegetable gardens.  

I planted it in my vegetable garden where it would  do well in enriched soil and receive regular water.


I love the tiny flowers that close at night.

Unlike other species of Oxalis, Pink Wood Sorrel is not invasive.


Even when not in flower, I love how pretty this plant is.


I enjoy growing some plant species that might seem out of place in the desert climate.  You just have to adjust the growing conditions a bit.  A partly shady corner of the vegetable garden works just perfectly for my false ‘shamrock’.

Noelle Johnson, aka, 'AZ Plant Lady' is a horticulturist, certified arborist, and landscape consultant who helps people learn how to create, grow, and maintain beautiful desert gardens that thrive in a hot, dry climate. She does this through her consulting services, her online class Desert Gardening 101, and her monthly membership club, Through the Garden Gate. As she likes to tell desert-dwellers, "Gardening in the desert isn't hard, but it is different."

9 replies
  1. Joyce
    Joyce says:

    I was given some of the little rhisomes from a friend's garden back in 1989 and have enjoyed this plant since then! Mine are big balls of pink blooms now. Love your blog

    Reply
  2. Joyce
    Joyce says:

    I was given some of the little rhisomes from a friend's garden back in 1989 and have enjoyed this plant since then! Mine are big balls of pink blooms now. Love your blog

    Reply
  3. Edel
    Edel says:

    I grew up with pink sorrel growing in our front garden here in Ireland. It was known locally by all the children as “Charlies” . We would pick the leaves and chew on their long stalks for the sour taste… used to love them!

    Reply
    • arizonaplantlady@gmail.com
      arizonaplantlady@gmail.com says:

      Hi Edel,

      What a lovely memory! I remember chewing on the stalks as well when I was a girl in California. I don’t remember seeing it when I visited Ireland, but if I ever get back to your beautiful country, I will definitely look for some. 🙂

      Reply

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