Sisymbrium sophia Linn.
Annual or biennial, 30-90 cm tall, erect, branched, hairy with simple and branched hairs below, and usually almost glabrous above. Leaves (2-) 3-pinnatisect, 5-15 cm long, stalked; lobes usually 1-2 mm broad, linear or oblong; upper most leaves sessile or subsessile, ± similar. Racemes 40-80-flowered, up to 30 cm long in fruit. Flowers 2-3 mm across, yellow; pedicels usually 10-15 mm long in fruit, filiform, ascending, glabrous. Sepals c. 2 mm long. Petals c. 2.5 (-4) mm long, 0.5-1 mm broad, rarely very reduced or abortive. Stamens c. 2: 2.5 mm long; anthers c. 0.5 mm long. Siliquae linear, 15-35 mm long, c. 1 mm broad, often upcurved, glabrous, obscurely torulose; valves subconvex, 1-veined; stigma depressed-capitate, subsessile; seeds many, c. 0.7 mm long, reddish-brown; septum veined.
Fl. Per.: April-July.
Type: Described from Europe, Herb. Linn. no. 836/31 (LINN).
Distribution: Most of Europe, Asia and Africa; introduced elsewhere.
A very variable species with several infra-specific taxa recognized. Our plants, with usually conspicuous petals exceeding the sepals, fall under the var. persica (Schrad.) Schulz, but smaller petal forms are not lacking. Leaves also sometimes show 1-2-pinnate conditions, and the size of siliquae is also very vari¬able. It is considered as fodder for camels.