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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains

22. Brassicaceae, the Mustard Family

2. Cardamine L. -- Bitter cress

2. Cardamine pensylvanica Muhl. ex Willd. -- Bitter Cress

Annual or biennial 1-6 dm tall, forming a basal rosette of leaves in the first year when biennial; stems simple and erect to branched and spreading, usually pubescent toward the base. Leaves pinnately compound, divided into usually 2-5 pairs of lateral leaflets and a single terminal lobe, the lower leaves typically divided into broader segments than the upper ones; blades 2-7 cm long, 1-4 cm wide, the leaflets oblong to obovate or oblanceolate, entire to remotely dentate or lobed, the terminal leaflet the largest, usually 5-35 mm long, 4-15 mm wide; petioles shorter than the blades, decreasing in length upward. Sepals 1-1.5 mm long; petals 1.5-3 mm long. Siliques 10-30 mm long, 0.5-1 mm wide, on pedicels 2-15 mm long. Jun-Jul. Stream banks, springs and swamps; occasional in n and e ND and e SD, otherwise rare and widely scattered; (Labr. to B.C., s to FL, AL, AR, OK and n CA).
GIF- Distribution Map

Map key

Previous Species -- Cardamine bulbosa (Schreb.) B.S.P. -- Spring cress
Return to Family -- Brassicaceae - The Mustard Family
Next Species -- Nasturtium officinale R. Br.

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