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Least Pepperweed
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Lepidium virginicum
  

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About Least Pepperweed (Lepidium virginicum) Lepidium virginicum, also known as least pepperwort, Virginia pepperweed or peppergrass, is an annual or biennial plant in the Brassicaceae or mustard family. It is native to much of North America, including most of the United States and Mexico and southern regions of Canada, as well as most of Central America. It can be found elsewhere as an introduced species. As with Lepidium campestre, Virginia pepperweed's most identifiable characteristic is its raceme, which comes from the plant's highly branched stem. The racemes give Virginia pepperweed the appearance of a bottlebrush. On the racemes are first small white flowers, and later greenish fruits. The entire plant is generally between 10 and 50 centimeters tall. The leaves on the stems of Virginia pepperweed are sessile, linear to lanceolate and get larger as they approach the base. Note that all parts of the plant have a peppery taste. Cultivation and uses. Virginia pepperweed grows as a weed in most crops and is found in roadsides, landscapes and waste areas. It prefers sunny locales with dry soil. The plant is edible. The young leaves can be used as a potherb, sauted or used raw, such as in salads. The young seedpods can be used as a substitute for black pepper. The leaves contain protein, vitamin A and vitamin C.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Annual herb

Max. Height
0.33 - 1.6 ft (0.1 - 0.49 m)

Flower Color
White, Green

Native Status
Native

Natural Setting
Elevation ?
4' - 9851'

Annual Precip. ?
4.3" - 91.6"

Summer Precip. ?
0.14" - 3.19"

Coldest Month ?
20.9° F - 59.4° F

Hottest Month ?
49.4° F - 87.4° F

Humidity ?
0.29 vpd - 39.81 vpd

Landscaping Information
Nursery Availability
Never or Almost Never Available

Other Names
Common Names
Virginia Pepperweed


Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora

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