Field pennycress

Encyclopedia Article

Field pennycress                                            Thlapsi arvense L.

Family:   Brassicaceae (Mustard family)
Life cycle:  Winter annual
Habitat:  Alfalfa and no-till fields; disturbed areas

General description:  Young plants produce a basal rosette of waxy, glabrous leaves; stem reaches height of 18 to 24 in.  Stem leaves have auricles that clasp leaves.  Flowers are white; fruit are flat, circular (0.5 in diameter) with distinct ‘wings’.

Key ID traits:  Light green, smooth leaves with wavy or slightly toothed margins.  Crushed leaves emit garlicky odor.  Circular, winged fruit approximately 1/2" in diameter.

Miscellaneous:   Milk from dairy cattle that graze or eat hay with field pennycress has a garlicky flavor. Research efforts have focused on developing field pennycress as a crop due to the characteristics of oils in the seed.

 Weed ID Fact Sheet Index

Field pennycress seedlings have circular/oval cotyledons with long petioles.

Rosette with glabrous leaves that have a waxy appearance.  Crushed leaves have
 a garlicky smell.


Bolded plant with flower clusters that haven't elongated.

Distinct winged seed capsules of field pennycress.