smallest hero image

Cardamine hirsuta - Hairy Bittercress

Cardamine hirsuta - Hairy Bittercress

Despite its daunting name, hairy bittercress makes a welcome wild addition to cool season dishes. 

Cardamine hirsuta provides the flavor of cabbage in the middle of winter. 

Common Name: Hairy Bittercress

Scientific Name:  Cardamine hirsuta

Plant Family: Brassicaceae

Identification: Stems are generally 3-8 inches long, and may be reddish in color closer to the base. Leaves are alternately arranged on the stem, may be lobed, and typically form a basal rosette on the stem’s lower quartile. 

Primary Uses

Edible Parts: The leaves and flowers are edible both cooked and raw. A member of the mustard family, using Hairy Bittercress as a salad garnish provides a mild peppery flavor. Because the plant germinates freely in Autumn, leaves can be found almost all winter long. 

Medicinal Uses: none known

Meaning of Scientific Name: 

cardaminae- cress-like plant 

hirsuta- rough, shaggy, hairy, bristly

Designing with this Plant

USDA Hardiness Zones: 4-8

Habitat: Open and cultivated ground, meadows, fields, rocks, man-made or disturbed habitats.

Forest garden layer: Groundcover/creeper Layer