from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A perennial herb (Rumex hymenosepalus) native chiefly to southwest North America, having tannin-rich, tuberous roots formerly used for tanning and in herbal medicine.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In Texas, a species of dock, Rumex hymenosepalus, the root of which is used in tanning.
- n. It is native on the arid plains from Texas to California, and has become prominent as a commercial source of tannin. The tuberous roots contain about 35 per cent. of tannic acid. These had long been utilized by the Mexicans as a medicine and for tanning saddle-leather when an export trade in them was started, at first in bulk, then as dried chips, then as extract. The natural supply being insufficient, cultivation with irrigation has been undertaken on a large scale.
Spanish.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)