Sisymbrium altissimum (Tall Tumble Mustard)
|Also known as:||Jim Hill Mustard|
|Life cycle:||annual, biennial|
|Habitat:||part shade, sun; disturbed soil; roadsides, fields, waste areas|
|Bloom season:||June - August|
|Plant height:||24 to 40 inches|
|Wetland Indicator Status:||GP: FACU MW: FACU NCNE: FACU|
|MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):|
|National distribution (click map to enlarge):|
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Small clusters of flowers at the end of branching stems that elongate as the plant matures. Flowers are about 1/3 inch across with 4 creamy white to light yellow petals and 6 greenish stamens in the center.
Leaves are up to 8 inches long and 3 inches wide, deeply lobed into narrow segments and may appear to be compound. Basal and lower stem leaves are short stalked, hairy around the edges, coarsely toothed or with smaller lobes on the sides.
Lobes become longer and narrower as leaves ascend the stem. Upper leaves are finely divided in linear segments, and mostly hairless. Stems are hairy to varying degrees in the lower part of the plant, hairless in the upper plant. Plants typically have numerous branches in a chaotic array, spreading in all directions.
A common weed of landscapes, nurseries and waste places, Tall Tumble Mustard is easily recognized at first glance by its open, thread-like mass and pale yellow flowers. The plant becomes brittle when it dries out and can break off at the base, tumbling about in the wind to spread its seed.
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- Tall Tumble Mustard plant
- plant hiding in the grass
- plant in a pavement crack
- volunteer in a landscape
- Tall Tumble Mustard with Hoary Alyssum
- basal rosette
- flowering and fruiting branches
Photos by K. Chayka taken in Ramsey County. Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken in Hennepin County.
Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?