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Biology

This perennial herb spreads mainly by producing horizontal stems or runners, correctly called stolons, from which new plants arise (3). The flowers are visited by a range of pollinating insects (2) but fruiting is typically very poor (3).  The roots of this herb were widely eaten as a vegetable, particularly in times of famine and it was even cultivated in some areas prior to the arrival of the potato. It was eaten raw, boiled or roasted and could be ground down to make bread and porridge. It was also used to treat mouth ulcers and wounds (4).

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