Polygonaceae: Knotweed Family — Rumex (Dock)
Docks are identified not by their flowers (which might reasonably be described as inconspicuous) but by their leaves, their growth habit and, above all, by what used to be described as “valves” but are now more accurately described as “perianth lobes”. There are 6 perianth lobes, the outer 3 inconspicuous, the inner 3 larger and clearly visible. Callosities (small white lumps) may be present on one or more of these inner perianth lobes; their number and size are important diagnostic features. In some cases it is impossible for the non-expert to identify species without being able to see the mature perianth and its callosities.