Salad burnet

Salad Burnet

©Philip Precey

Salad burnet

Scientific name: Sanguisorba minor
A low-growing herb of chalk and limestone grassland, Salad burnet lives up to its name - it is a popular addition to salads and smells of cucumber when crushed!

Species information


Height: up to 50cm

Conservation status


When to see

May to September


Salad burnet is a low-growing herb of chalk and limestone grassland that produces rounded, reddish flower heads from May to September. 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.

How to identify

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.


Mainly found in England.

Did you know?

The rusty-coloured flower heads of Salad burnet made it a favourite among herbalists for helping to heal wounds.

How people can help

The Wildlife Trusts manage many grassland habitats sympathetically for the benefit of all kinds of wildlife. Careful grazing with traditional breeds, hay-cutting at the right time and scrub clearance are just some of the ways grasslands are kept in good condition. By volunteering for your local Trust you can help too, and you'll make new friends and learn new skills along the way.