Western Peppergrass

Western Peppergrass, Vancouver Island, BC
Western Peppergrass, Vancouver Island, BC, Photo By Bud Logan

Western Peppergrass is a round plant formed by many slender branches, each branch has a short dense raceme of tiny white flowers at the end. This plant flowers from March to August, sometimes it will push out a second flowering after heavy rain in the fall.

It grows all over southern B.C.coast and south to California, east to New Mexico and Montana.

Some of its common names are Western Peppergrass,  Pepperweed, and  Pepperwort. There are 12 varieties of Peppergrass. They prefer to grow from Sun to partial sun.

The seeds can be used as a pepper-like spice, thus the common name. The dried seed pods should be dried and ground. The greens can be eaten and are quite rich in vitamin A. The seeds can be chewed as a relief for headaches. The seed pods, leaves, and flowers can be used to flavor soups and meat dishes. It is spicier than black pepper, so be gentle with it as it becomes quite hot after cooking into a dish.

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