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Hairy Bittercress

Cardamine hirsuta

Plant Data

Order:
Brassicales
Family:
Brassicaceae (Cabbage)
Flowering Months:
JAN  FEB  MAR  APR  MAY  JUN  JUL  AUG  SEP  OCT  NOV  DEC
Flowers:
Tiny and forming clusters at the top. 4 white petals with 4 yellow stamens. Counting the number of stamens is perhaps the most reliable way to distinguish this flower from the almost identical Wavy Bittercress which has 6 yellow stamens.
Fruit:
Long and slender seed pods that split open when ripe.
Leaves:
Basal rosette, anything up to 9 inches long. Compound leaves with alternate leaflets that have one leaf per node along the main upright stem. The leaves persist throughout the winter months.
Maximum Size:
30cm tall.
Foraging Notes:
Bitter tasting as the name suggests. In fact, peppery and similar to cress that you would buy at the supermarket. This flower is high in vitamins A and C, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. It can be eaten raw or cooked and the whole plant can be eaten.
Never consume a wild plant unless you are 100% certain that it is safe to eat and you know that you have identified it correctly.
Aroma:
The leaves are aromatic when bruised.
Other Names:
Common Bittercress, Flick Weed, Hoary Bittercress, Hoary Wood Cress, Jumping Jesus, Lamb's Cress, Land Cress, Pennsylvania Bittercress, Pepperweed, Popping Cress, Shotweed, Small Bittercress, Snapweed, Spring Cress.
Habitats:
Farmland, gardens, rocks, swamps, walls, wasteland, wetland, woodland.