Sinapis arvensis

Sinapis arvensis_wild mustard_JM DiTomaso
Photo: Joseph DiTomaso

Synonyms: Brassica arvensis, Brassica kaber

Common names: wild mustard; canola; charlock mustard; common mustard; crunch-weed; field kale; field mustard; kedlock; rapeseed

Sinapis arvensis (wild mustard, charlock) is an annual herb (family Brassicaceae) that is native to the Mediterranean region and naturalized in California and many other parts of the world. It can grow up to more than 1 m tall and has yellow flowers that are typical of mustards. Unlike many other mustards, plants do not have a basal rosette. Basal leaves are lobed while cauline leaves are reduced and dentate; fruits are up to about 4.5 cm long, not hairy, and pointed upward (but not appressed as with black mustard). Stems are sometimes reddish, branched, with coarse hairs. Wild mustard grows in disturbed places and is rarely found in undisturbed wildlands. Seeds are toxic to most mammals.

Cal-IPC Rating: Limited?

CDFA Rating: None?


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

There are no newsletter articles associated with this species yet.

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.

There are no Symposium presentations associated with this species yet.

Other Sinapis arvensis Information

  • Bugwood - National database from the Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health at the University of Georgia.
  • CalPhotos - Images of plants taken mostly in California.
  • Calflora - Distribution map and records of this species in California.
  • CalWeedMapper - Distribution map of this species in California with ability to determine regional priorities.
  • EDDMapS - Distribution of this species in North America.
  • GBIF - Global distribution information.
  • Jepson Interchange - Information on this plant's taxonomy, biology, and distribution from UC Berkeley's Jepson Herbarium.
  • USDA PLANTS Database - Information on identification and distribution, with links to websites in individual states.
  • The Plant List - Global taxonomic resource and collaborative clearinghouse from Kew Gardens, the Royal Botanic Gardens, the Missouri Botanic Garden and others.
  • Additional photos

    Sinapis arvensis_leaves and inflorescence_copyright2010_NealKramer
    Sinapis arvensis (wild mustard) leaves and inflorescence. Photo: &#169 2010 Neal Kramer
    Sinapis arvensis_fruits_ZoyaAkulova
    Sinapis arvensis (wild mustard) fruits. Photo: Zoya Akulova
    Sinapis arvensis_mature fruit with seed_ZoyaAkulova
    Sinapis arvensis (wild mustard) mature fruit with seed. Photo: Zoya Akulova
    Sinapis arvensis_stem and leaf_ZoyaAkulova
    Sinapis arvensis (wild mustard) stem and leaf. Photo: Zoya Akulova