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Black Mustard - Brassica nigra
Family: Brassicaceae

Flowers from May to June

Description

This weed is also known as Sinapis nigra and commonly as shortpod mustard. Like other mustards, this plant has 4 yellow petals and 6 stammen. Differentiating it from other mustards is tricky. The upper leaves are linear-oblong, entire or sinuate, glabrous and dentate with all leaves petiolate; flowers in enlongate racemes, regular petals yellow, 7–9 mm long, stamens 6, fruit a silique, long slender beaked pod.

Similar species include Wild Mustard, and Field Mustard

Interesting facts

This plant is harvested for use in our everyday mustards. Often it is combined with Brassica alba, to make some of the more common mustards. Another use of this plant is to use the oil (allyl isothiocyanate) as a dog and cat repellant.

Black Mustard is probably native to the Mediterranean area, although there is still some debate, and is now widespread across most of the world.

Links to more information

  1. Description and Uses - Great general article about the medicines and everyday uses of this plant. (Purdue University)

  2. Species info - From the Museum of S. Africa - short and concise overview

For more info Contact Rob Nelson


Website, video, and graphics by Rob Nelson
For more information on this plant or management please contact US Army Corp of Engineers

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