HEDGE MUSTARD

Sisymbrium officinale

Cabbage Family [Brassicaceae]

month8apr month8april month8may month8jun month8june month8jul month8july month8aug month8sep month8sept month8oct

status
statusZarchaeophyte
flower
flower8yellow
inner
inner8cream
morph
morph8actino
petals
petalsZ4
stem
stem8round
sex
sexZbisexual

20th April 2019, near the sea, Crosby, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
One of the commonest yellow-flowered Cabbage family of plants. Grows from 15 to 100cm high, although these specimens look taller than 1m!. Can congregate in large clusters from initial beginnings.


28th May 2012, on the beach, Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
It doesn't especially favour the coast, but most of the specimens shown herein on this page grow near the coast, if not actually on the shoreline as here!


20th April 2019, near the sea, Crosby, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Grows more or less bolt upright on stiffish stems. Has small clusters of yellow flowers atop.


4th May 2019, atop railway bridge, Appley Bridge, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Stems usually darkish purple and very upright. Leaves are variable, but with deep lobes each side. The upper with just 2 narrower lobes in the shape of a 'T' or a 'Y' with the 3 lobes each tapering as a narrow triangle. The lower leaves have several deep lobes with those nearer the stem tending to angle backwards.


28th May 2012, on the beach, Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Branches come out on alternate sides initially at ~45° to vertical but often curving more upwards near the tips.


20th April 2019, near the sea, Crosby, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
The branches always seem to appear on opposite sides of the stem, alternately; seemingly never peeling off in any but two directions, left or right.


4th May 2019, atop railway bridge, Appley Bridge, Lancs. Photo: © RWD


4th May 2019, atop railway bridge, Appley Bridge, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Leaves and lobes in better detail.


3rd May 2017, Crosby, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
The stems here, near the summit, are pale green rather than dull purple. Leaves are either 'T' shaped or 'Y' shaped near the summit.


28th May 2012, on the beach, Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
A specimen with narrow lobes mid way up the stem.


28th May 2012, on the beach, Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Stems are sparsely hairy with bristly hairs, or with no hairs.


28th May 2012, on the beach, Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
The side branches get shorter and shorter as the summit is reached, and the leaves are much narrower. A small bunch of small flowers tip the branches and summit. Seed pods are narrow and held upright close to the stem.


28th May 2012, on the beach, Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
The flowers are small with 4 pale yellow petals and 6 stamens.
4th May 2019, atop railway bridge, Appley Bridge, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Flowers at first in dense clusters.


4th May 2019, atop railway bridge, Appley Bridge, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
4 white-haired sepals surround as-yet un-opened flowers. The sepals may be tipped brown-purple, or green as in the specimen below.


30th May 2015, Lathkilldale, White Peaks, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
In the centre is a discoidal pale-yellow stigma surrounded by 4 concolourous anthers in a square formation. Two extra anthers are slightly shorter and on opposite sides. Petals between 3.1 to 4.2mm long.


28th May 2012, on the beach, Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
As the upper stem grows, the individual flowers get well separated on the stem like the pods will be later.


30th May 2015, Lathkilldale, White Peaks, Derbyshire. Photo: © RWD
The seed pods are now becoming well separated on an ever extending/stretching stem. Ripe seed pods 10 to 20mm long, possibly hairy when young but becoming hairless as they ripen. They are on short stalks.


Not to be semantically confused with : Swiss Treacle-mustard Erysimium rhaeticum, Spreading Treacle-mustard Erysimiumrepandum, Ball Mustard (Neslia paniculata), Tower Mustard (Turritis glabra), Hare's-ear Mustard (Conringia orientalis), Chinese Mustard (Brassica juncea), Black Mustard (Brassica nigra), White Mustard (Sinapi alba), Treacle Mustard (Erysimum cheiranthoides), Russian Mustard (Sisymbrium volgense), Hoary Mustard (Hirschfeldia incana), Horned Mustard (Sisymbrium polyceratium), Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata) [plants with similar names and probably similar hot taste but in differing genera of the Brassicacea family]

Some similarities to : other Rockets in the Sisymbrium genus. Uniquely identifiable characteristics

Distinguishing Feature : The way the branches appear on opposite sides, angled maybe 45° upwards at first before going skywards near the end, plus the narrow seed pods held parallel and close to the stem.


  Sisymbrium officinale  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Brassicaceae  

Distribution
 family8Cabbage family8Brassicaceae
 BSBI maps
genus8Sisymbrium
Sisymbrium
(Rockets)

HEDGE MUSTARD

Sisymbrium officinale

Cabbage Family [Brassicaceae]