Descurainia sophia

Scientific Name Descurainia sophia L.
Synonyms Sisymbrium sophia L.
Common Names English: Tansy mustard, flixweed, German: Sophienkraut, French: Sagesse-des-chirurgiens
Description Annual, over-wintering, seed-propagated weed with ramified taproot. The plant is slighly poisonous.

Descriptions

Characteristic Features

Much divided leaves, densely pubescent stems, and ascending long fruits.

Young Plant

Elongate, leaf tip obtuse, 3 - 6 mm (0.12 - 0.23 inch) long, short-petiolate, lower part covered with rare, thin hairs.

Stems

Erect, often branched above, stretched-ramified.
Plants are 20 -50 cm (7.87 - 19.68 inch) tall.

Leaves

Alternate, sessile, basal with auricles, bi- tripinnatisect, with lineal- lanceolate lacinules, fine gray or whitish pubescent, linear or broadly ovate.

Propagatio Organs

Flowers

Bright yellow to whitish.
Peduncles 2-3 times longer than sepals.
Petals(4) pale-greenish-yellow, 1.5 - 2.5 mm (0.059 - 0.098 inch) long, in elongated clusters (racemes).

Flowering Period

Late spring - middle of autumn.

Fruit

Silique to 2.5 cm (0.98 inch) long, 1 mm (0.039 inch) in diameter, many seeded.
Pedicel up to 1.5 cm (0.59 inch) long, filiform.

Seeds

Germination in spring and autumn.

Viability Of Seeds

Up to 4 years.

Propagation

110,000 - 770,000 seeds/plant.
Shallow germinator.
Germination depth up to 3 cm ( 1.18 inch).

Occurrence

Habitat

Waste ground, disturbed sites, roadsides, railroads.

Soil

Common on various, especially sandy and light soils.

Agricultural Importance

D. sophia originates from North America and is a troublesome weed in cultivated lands, grain fields, oil seed rape and disturbed areas.
The weed is toxic to livestock.

Control

Integrated Crop Management

Competitive crops and mulching reduce emergence of tansy mustard.

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