Hairy bittercress

Asked April 27, 2020, 1:02 PM EDT

A quick Google search makes it clear that hairy Bittercress is a weed that most people hate. But in the somewhat wild area next to my house it has arrived in force this spring and actually looks OK. I was going to put in pachysandra there just to keep something low and green. Is it crazy to leave the hairy bittercress there? How tall will it get and how will it look later in the season? And I see that it is edible!

Berrien County Michigan

1 Response

Hello. A few things about hairy bittercress before you make your decision. The mature plants will not stay green all year but die back after producing seed. It is a winter annual which means the plants germinate in the cooler weather of fall and late summer. It is a biennial so the first year it is a small rosette and the next spring it flowers. When the flowers fade there are slim seed pods which burst open to release the seeds. The seeds will spread everywhere so if you decide to let the plant stay in that spot be prepared to find it in other areas of your yard. It is a very prolific seeder! I hope this info helps in your deciding how to manage it!