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PLANT PROFILE LIST
SPECIES / FAMILY: Cardamine Hirsuta / Brassicaceae
OTHER COMMON NAME(S): Hairy Bitter Cress
CONDITIONS: sun (recipes)
COMMENT: The plant germinates most freely in the autumn and so leaves are usually available all winter. Leaves and flowers used as garnish or in salads or soups.
CAUTION: As with any hot and spicy food, eat in moderation.
NUTRITION/MEDICINAL: It contains glucosinolates which are known to help remove carcinogens from the body. It also contains, vitamin C, beta-carotene, and possibly lutein which is known to help reduce vision problems including cataracts.(5)
LOOK-A-LIKES: Like other cresses such as Shepard’s Purse https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capsella_bursa-pastoris
OTHER USES: The tiny flowers are attractive to a few early butterflies, including (in the United States) spring azure (Celastrina ladon) and falcate orange-tip (Anthocharis midea).(1)
SOURCE LINKS (may include nutritional and medicinal info, plus other uses):
- http://www.foragingtexas.com/2006/12/bittercress.html (good photos)
- https://www.colorfulcanary.com/2016/05/9-heavenly-hairy-bittercress-recipes.html (recipes)
- https://www.juliasedibleweeds.com/general/bittercress-a-warming-winter-weed (recipes)
- https://huntergathercook.typepad.com/huntergathering_wild_fres/2013/01/hairy-bittercress-pesto.html (recipes)