Scientific Name: Sisymbrium offcinale

Common Name: hedgemustard

Synonyms: Erysimum officinale

Habit: Seedlings have club-shaped cotyledons. Mature plants first produce a basal rosette then flowering stems reaching 30 cm to 1 m tall. Root is made up of a slender branching taproot.

Leaves: Leaves are pinnately lobed with deeply toothed margins. Both sides of the leaves are covered with bristly hairs and the end of the leaf has the largest segment.

Identifying Characteristics: Yellow flower petals are less than 3 mm long and fruit less than 1.5 cm long.

Flower Seed Head: Clusters of yellow flowers on the ends of long flower stems appear June through September. Flowers have 4 petals 1 to 2.5 mm long.

Seed Fruit: Fruit is awl shaped measuring less than 1.5 cm in length with 2 compartments containing 20 seeds each. Seeds 1-1.5 mm long, are egg or triangle shaped and reddish brown in color.

Where Found: Across most of the United States this species prefers dry loamy, sandy, or stony soils. Nursery, horticultural and agricultural crops are all home to hedge mustard.

  • Life cycle: winter annual

  • Milky sap: Not Present

  • Plant type: Herb

  • Thorns: Not Present

  • Plant family: Brassicaceae

  • Leaf arrangement: alternate; rosette

  • Leaf shape: lance; oval; triangle

  • Leaf margin: lobed

  • Stem hairs: has hairs

  • Flower color: yellow; white

  • Growth habit: upright and nonwoody

  • Stem: round or oval

  • Leaf structure: pinnate

  • Leaf hairs: no hairs; has hairs

  • Flower symmetry: bilateral symetry

  • Flower diameter: pencil

  • Root structure: taproot

  • Leaf stalk: none; shorter than leaf