Hirschfeldia incana, Brassica geniculata, Brassica incana,
Sinapis incana, Hoary Mustard,
Hebrew: לפתית מצויה, Arabic: خزامي

Scientific name:  Hirschfeldia incana (L.) Lagrèze-Fossat
Scientific name:  Brassica geniculata (L.)(Desf.) J. Ball, Brassica incana Ten., Sinapis incana L.
Common name:   Hoary Mustard
Hebrew name:   לפתית מצויה
Arabic name:  خزامي
Family:  Cruciferae / Brassicaceae, מצליבים

Flowers of Israel, flora en Israel

Life form:  Annual
Stems:  90-120 cm tall ;branched from the base; each branch branches repeatedly; usually glabrescent to densely hairy
Leaves:  Alternate, rosette, dissected, dentate or serrate
Inflorescence:  Racemes elongate in fruit
Flowers:  4 sepals; 4 yellow petals; 6 stamens (4 long, 2 short stamens)
Fruits / pods:  7-16 mm long × 1-1.5(-1.8) mm wide; weak veins on dried fruit; seeds in fruit and beak; beak of fruits 3-6.5 mm long, (0-)1(-2) seeded, swollen, tapering to a persistent style c. 1 mm long at tip; seeds 0.9-1.4 mm long, ovoid to subglobose, brown
Flowering Period:   January, February, March, April, May
Habitat:   Batha, Phrygana
Distribution:  Mediterranean Woodlands and Shrublands, Semi-steppe shrublands, Shrub-steppes, Deserts and extreme deserts, Montane vegetation of Mt. Hermon
Chorotype:   Med - Irano-Turanian
Summer shedding:  Ephemeral

Israel, Native plants, Palestine, Nature


Derivation of the botanical name:
Hirschfeldia, named for Christian Cay Lorenz Hirschfeld. (1742 – 1792), a German horticulturist.
incana, very gray, hoary.
Brassica, the classical Latin name for cabbage.
geniculata, bent sharply like a knee.
Sinapis, sinapi, Latin name for the mustard plant, from the flavor of the seeds.
  • The standard author abbreviation L. is used to indicate Carl Linnaeus (1707 – 1778), a Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist, the father of modern taxonomy.
  • The standard author abbreviation Lagrèze-Fossat is used to indicate Adrian Rose Arnaud Lagrèze-Fossat ( 1818 - 1874 ), a French naturalist and lawyer.
  • The standard author abbreviation Desf. is used to indicate René Louiche Desfontaines (1750 – 1833), a French botanist.
  • The standard author abbreviation J. Ball is used to indicate John Ball (1818 - 1889), an Irish politician, naturalist and Alpine traveller.
  • The standard author abbreviation Ten. is used to indicate Michele Tenore (1780 – 1861), an Italian botanist
Hirschfeldia incana is a tall yellow crucifer with appressed fruits which looks remarkably similar to Brassica nigra, and is frequently confused with it, mainly because the ‘veins-on-the-valves’ character used to split them in some keys is very difficult to interpret. Though variable, the plants are quite distinct. Different beaks to the fruit is the most diagnostic character. The Brassica nigra has a strong central vein and weak lateral veins on dried fruit, and the beak is 2-5(-6) mm long, sterile, narrowly conical to linear; the Hirschfeldia incana has weak veins on dried fruit, and the beak 3-6.5 mm long, (0-)1(-2) seeded, swollen, tapering to a persistent style c. 1 mm long at tip.



Hirschfeldia incana, Brassica geniculata, Brassica incana, Sinapis incana, Hoary Mustard, לִפתית מצויה