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Wintercress

Barbarea vulgaris

Plant Data

Order:
Brassicales
Family:
Brassicaceae (Cabbage)
Flowering Months:
JAN  FEB  MAR  APR  MAY  JUN  JUL  AUG  SEP  OCT  NOV  DEC
Flowers:
Bright yellow compact flower clusters on ridged stalks. 4 petals. Individual flowers are small, up to 9mm.
Fruit:
Long, narrow, erect, many-seeded, curved fruit pods. 4-edged and hairless.
Leaves:
The leaves form a basal rosette and stem leaves are also present. The stem leaves alternate along the stem. The topmost stem leaves are stalkless. The leaves are lobed and the terminal lobe is very large. The margins of the leaves are either wavy or straight (entire).
Maximum Size:
90cm tall.
Foraging Notes:
The basal leaves are edible, raw or cooked but they become bitter later in the year. The leaves can be used like spinach and can be added to salads, or dried and used to make tea. The young flowering stems can be cooked in a similar way as broccoli.
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:
Faintly aromatic.
Other Names:
Bitter Wintercress, Bittercress, Common Wintercress, Garden Yellowrocket, Herb Barbara, Herb of St Barbara, Rocketcress, Wound Rocket, Yellow Rocket, Yellow Rocketcress.
Habitats:
Ditches, farmland, grassland, hedgerows, meadows, riverbanks, roadsides, rocks, wasteland, waterside.