Brassica nigra

Photo by Ron Vanderhoff

Synonyms: Sinapis nigra (L.)

Common names: black mustard

Brassica nigra (black mustard) is a winter annual herb/forb (family Brassicaceae). Like other mustards, black mustard grows profusely and produces allelopathic chemicals that prevent germination of native plants. The spread of black mustard can increase the frequency of fires in chaparral and coastal sage scrub, changing these habitats to annual grassland.

Cal-IPC Rating: Moderate

Cal-IPC Assessment

Plant Assessment Form - Information gathered by Cal-IPC on the impacts, rate of spread, and distribution of invasive plants in California. Does not include management information.

Weed Management Notes

  • Management Notes - Information on management techniques and effectiveness from the University of California Cooperative Extension’s Weed Research & Information Center.

Cal-IPC Newsletter Articles

Cal-IPC Symposium Presentations

Presentations are linked where available. Where a presentation is not available, find more information by reading the abstract in the Cal-IPC Symposia Archive.

Other Brassica nigra Information

  • CalPhotos - Images of plants taken mostly in California.
  • Calflora - See the distribution of this species on Calflora's map of California.
  • CalWeedMapper - Distribution information with ability to determine regional priorities.
  • Jepson Online Interchange for California Flora - Information on taxonomy, biology, and distribution from UC Berkeley's Jepson Herbarium.
  • USDA PLANTS Database - Federal database with information on identification and distribution, and links to websites in individual states.
  • EDDMapS - North American distribution based on Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System.
  • Additional photos

    Brassica nigra_Black Mustard_flower JM DiTomaso
    Photo courtesy Joseph DiTomaso
    Brassica nigra_Black Mustard_plants_JM DiTomaso
    Photo courtesy Joseph DiTomaso