Main page content begins here

Lens-podded hoary cress
Photo Credit: John Randall, The Nature Conservancy, Retrieved from (Image Number: 5391987), used under CC BY-NC 3.0 US, modified from the original

Common Name: Lens-Podded Hoary Cress

Scientific Name: Lepidium chalepense

Habitat: Roadsides, farmland, grassland, grassland dry, grassland wet, disturbed areas

Provincial Designation: Noxious

Noxious weeds are plant species that are designated as "noxious weeds" in the Alberta weed regulation. Noxious weeds must be controlled, meaning their growth or spread needs to be prevented.


Lens-podded hoary cress is native to Europe and Asia and was introduced to North America together with the very similar globe-podded hoary cress in the early 1900s. It was likely introduced as a contaminant of alfalfa seed or horse feed.

Legislated Because

Lens-podded hoary cress can be an aggressive invader that can form dense monocultures in open grasslands and riparian areas. It also serves as a host for insect pests that feed on crops.


The flowers are white, 6-10 mm wide, and have four petals. Numerous flowers are borne at the end of the stem in flat topped clusters.

Leaves are grey-green or blue-green in colour, oblong or lance shaped, and 4-10 cm long. The leaves of most plants are covered with soft hairs and clasp the stem. Some plants have short stalked leaves with no hairs.

The fruits of this hoary cress are spherical in shape and have no hairs. Stems are erect, are sometimes hairy, and can grow up to 65 cm tall.

Learn more about this species:

SeeFact Sheets - Alberta Invasive Species Council

For More Information

Weed Management


In Edmonton: 311

Outside Edmonton: 780-442-5311


End of page content. Please choose between the following five options:

Back to main menu Back to current page menu and content View current page breadcrumb Back to site search Continue to page footer content