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Genus Sisymbrium Family Brassicaceae

Description: Annuals or biennials, glabrous or with simple hairs.

Leaves variable in dissection and size, usually less than 20 cm long, basal leaves commonly in a rosette, stem leaves reducing to ± entire.

Inflorescence usually paniculate. Petals clawed. Stigma ± 2-lobed.

Siliqua mostly linear, sometimes conical, not beaked; valves with 3 veins; seeds not mucilaginous when wet, in 1 row per loculus.


Distribution and occurrence: World: 90 species, temperate Asia, Europe & Mediterranean, southern Africa. Australia: 6 species, all States.

Text by L. Retter & G. J. Harden
Taxon concept:

 Key to the species 
1Siliqua less than 2 cm long, conical, erect, at least pedicel closely appressed to stemSisymbrium officinale
Siliqua more than 2 cm long, linear, spreading from spreading pedicel2
2Flowers large, the petals more than 5 mm long, style more than 1 mm long; plants scabrous to pubescent3
Flowers small, petals less than 5 mm long, style less than 1 mm long; plants glabrous or softly hairy
                       Back to 1
5
3Inflorescence with bracts; pedicels usually 5–20 mm long; cotyledons longitudinally foldedSisymbrium thellungii
Inflorescence without bracts; pedicels less than 10 mm long; cotyledons flat
                       Back to 2
4
4Outer sepals not horned; upper leaves petiolate, entire or sagittate with the terminal lobe oblong or lanceolateSisymbrium orientale
Outer sepals horned; upper leaves more or less sessile, pinnatisect with the terminal lobe linear
                       Back to 3
Sisymbrium altissimum
5Siliqua curved, spreading; pedicel slender, 6–10 mm long; petals more than 2.5 mm longSisymbrium irio
Siliqua straight, horizontal; pedicel thick, 2–5 mm long; petals less than 2.5 mm long
                       Back to 2
Sisymbrium erysimoides

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