Oxalis triangularis (False Shamrock)

Scientific Name

Oxalis triangularis A. St.-Hil.

Common Names

False Shamrock, Purple Shamrock, Love Plant, Purple Passion, Wood Sorrel


Acetosella triangularis, Acetosella yapacaniensis, Oxalis corumbaensis, Oxalis delta, Oxalis glaberrima, Oxalis papilionacea, Oxalis regnellii, Oxalis tenuiscaposa, Oxalis venturiana, Oxalis vernalis, Oxalis yapacaniensis

Scientific Classification

Family: Oxalidaceae
Genus: Oxalis


Color: White or pale purple
Bloom Time: Spring and summer, blooms repeatedly


Oxalis triangularis is a beautiful clump-forming herbaceous plant that grows up to 10 inches (25 cm) tall and up to 15 inches (38 cm) wide. Leaves are purple, trifoliate with leaflets shaped like inverted triangles. They are open during the day and close at night. The flowers are small, funnel-shaped, and white or pale purple.

Oxalis triangularis – False Shamrock
Photo via jparkers.co.uk


USDA hardiness zone 7a to 10b: from 0 °F (−17.8 °C) to 40 °F (+4.4 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Oxalis can be grown indoors as a houseplant or outdoors in the garden. They from the garden center are generally available in the fall or early spring.

Oxalis need bright indirect light to grow well and produce flowers. They can often bloom all winter if kept in a sunny spot. Keep the soil of an Oxalis barely moist but never soggy; allow the top 2 inches (5 cm) of soil to dry out before watering. It's best to water an Oxalis from the bottom so that the thin, fragile stems of the plant don't get waterlogged and the soil stays loose. Oxalis grows best in cool temperatures between 60ºF to 70ºF (15ºC to 21ºC) during the day and 55ºF to 65ºF (13ºC to 18ºC) at night. The soil for an Oxalis should be loose and sandy rather than rich and organic.

Feed an Oxalis monthly in the spring and summer when actively growing with a basic houseplant food at ½ the recommended strength. Never feed an Oxalis when it is dormant, and the bulbs are resting. See more at How to Grow and Care for Oxalis.


Native to Brazil, Bolivia, Argentina, and Paraguay.


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