Shepherd’s purse – Capsella bursa-pastoris

Shepherd's purse rosette

Shepherd’s purse rosette

Shepherd's purse seedhead

Shepherd’s purse seedhead

Shepherd's purse fruit

Shepherd’s purse fruit

Shepherd’s purse

Capsella bursa-pastoris (L.) Medicus
Brassicaceae (Mustard family)

Life cycle
Erect winter or summer annual.

Leaves initially develop from a basal rosette. Basal leaves are stalked and highly variable in shape; young leaves are first roundedand elongated, becoming variously lobed, toothed to wavy. Smaller stem leaves are alternate with smooth to toothed margins andclasping bases.

Erect, slender, hairy, up to 2-foot-tall stems bolt from a basal rosette to flower. Flower stems are usually unbranched with few to no leaves.

Flowers and fruit
White flowers with four small petals are found in terminal clusters. Fruit are distinctly heart-shaped to triangular pods found on elongated, unbranched stems.