Sheeps Burnett

Sheeps Burnett

Sanguisorba minor


Sheeps Burnet is a perennial forage herb. Introduced into the New Zealand high country to re-vegetate erosive and semi-arid areas. Originating from southwest Europe. This forage herb adds diversity grazing pastures. It has a large oval-shaped, angular-seed, 3 - 4mm in length, leaflets have toothed margins with midrib. Flower heads dense on long stalks and crimson coloured. It is deep rooting with strong taproots.



  • early spring growth in low rainfall areas and moderate soil fertility 
  • spring and autumn growth provides quality grazing over a long growing season
  • persistent - drought tolerant
  • improves animal health with its store of nutrients
  • good frost tolerance
  • develops soil quality - drawing up minerals and trace elements from subsoils and stores them in the top layer of the soil
  • large deep taproot, which helps it remain green on shallow, dry soils.
  • helps to reduce soil erosion
  • grows in the same conditions as Hieracium, no evidence that it has competitive abilities against Hieracium



  • sensitive to the high-temperature fluctuations
  • limited summer production if scorching hot and dry
  • slow initial establishment
  • overgrazing when young or excessive grazing during establishment may reduce the plant population, and it can disappear from the pasture 
  • does not grow well in mid to high rainfall areas
  • not advised to be sown as a pure stand, but is a healthy addition to grazing pastures


Sowing Rate

  • 22.5kg per ha. 
  • Not usually sown as a pure pasture 

Mixture Sowing Rate Advice

  • 2.5kg per ha.

Ideal Sowing Time

  • sown in spring until early autumn; late autumn sowing not recommended.