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white top weed seed

Grazing: All plants of the Mustard family are edible to some degree, although they may contain varying amounts of glucosinolate glycosides (See Botany in a Day ) which may interfere with the body’s ability to absorb iodine if taken in excess. Supplemental iodine may be fed to livestock to help prevent complications, and alternate forage must be available, especially for young or lactating stock. Few actual grazing studies have been done on these plants. Whitetop is considered nutritious, but coarse and bitter when mature. Sheep graze on it in the early growth stage, and cattle eat the seed pods. Much to my surprise, our horses willingly grazed it to the ground early in the season, before and during the bloom. As shown in the photo, I ran the electric fence through the whitetop patch for comparison. Inside the pasture the horses ate it down to nothing. With a little attention and well-timed grazing, whitetop need not become a serious problem!

About Whitetop: The three species of whitetop differ in the shape of their seed pods. Hoary cress ( Lepidium draba ) has the heart-shaped seed pods and is most common in Montana. It is also known as Whitlow Grass. Hairy whitetop ( L. appelianum ) has purplish, globe-shaped seed pods, and lens-podded whitetop ( L. chalepense ) has lens-shaped seed pods, as the name implies. A related, similarly invasive species is perennial pepperweed, ( L. latifolium ), also called Cardaria latifolia . These plants are native to the Middle East and the former USSR. The weed seeds were probably brought to this country with contaminated alfalfa seed. Whitetop was first identified in Gallatin County, Montana in 1916. It has spread to about 32,000 acres across the state. It may be more prolific in other western states.

Edibility: As all mustards, this early season plant has been traditionally eaten as a spring green. Add a few leaves to a salad for a spicy mustard flavor. Some prefer to cook whitetop in one or two changes of water (3-5 min. each). Please see the forager blogs Hunger and Thirst for Life, as well as Wild Food Girl for recipes and discussions of a potential safety concern.

Seeding: Whitetop can be out-competed by dense stands of perennial grasses or legumes like alfalfa.

Other early wild mustards are perhaps more delicious, such as the related perennial pepperweed, ( Lepidium latifolium ), as well as creasy greens, aka bittercress, ( Barbarea spp. ) (two changes of water makes it delicious), blue mustard ( Chorispora tenella ), and field pennycress, ( Thlaspi arvense ).

Whitetop favors disturbed soils with moderate moisture, especially road-sides, ditch banks, sub-irrigated pastures and rangeland. Irrigation water can be screened to prevent seed dispersal to fields. A single plant can spread to an area 12 feet in diameter in its first year by sending up shoots via lateral underground stems, called rhizomes. Once established, a patch may continue to spread at 2 to 5 feet per year. Each plant can produce 1,200 to 4,800 seeds. The seeds are only viable in the soil for about two years.

Whitetop or Hoary Cress
Hoary Cress. Lepidium draba (formerly known as Cardaria draba )
Lens-podded Whitetop. Lepidium chalepense (formerly known as Cardaria chalepensis )
Hairy Whitetop. Lepidium appelianum (formerly known as Cardaria pubescens )
Mustard Family | By Thomas J. Elpel with additions by Pamela G. Sherman

Once you have the best cannabis seeds for you, it’s worth ensuring you get maximum germination rates with a good germination method. The preferred Dutch Passion way to germinate cannabis seeds is with moist (but never soaked) cotton pads. If you spot any issue during the growth of your cannabis seeds, we highly recommend to refer to our illustrated guide featuring the key nutrient deficiencies and excesses symptoms and how to cure them.

The dark cannabis seeds (on the right hand side in the video) showed the same germination rate as the white cannabis seeds (left hand side). However, the white cannabis seeds appeared to germinate a little bit faster than the dark cannabis seeds.

We hope the germination video is a useful illustration of the fact that there is little useful information that can be conveyed by the colour or darkness of a cannabis seed.

What should you look out for in a cannabis seed?

One suggestion is that the white cannabis seeds may have a slightly softer shell, allowing the white cannabis seeds a slightly faster germination. The experiment was repeated twice more. On each occasion, the seed germination rates were the same, but the white seeds tended to germinate faster.

There have been many theories about how the size, shape and colour of cannabis seeds can affect the plants which they eventually produce. In reality, it’s the cannabis genetics inside the seed case which really determines the results that you can expect. The shell of the seed and the markings on it are purely cosmetic and don’t give any clues to the results you can expect.

Even cannabis seeds produced from the same branch of a plant can have quite different appearances. Size, as well as shape and colour can vary. Some cannabis strains can produce seeds that have certain appearance characteristics. White Widow seeds, for example, can often be very small and pale. Frisian Dew seeds can have a slightly grey colour.

One common question from growers is whether white cannabis seeds or dark cannabis seeds have different germination rates. When you compare cannabis seeds you may have noticed that the seeds are rarely identical. Instead you may see a range of different sizes and colours. The differences in size, colour and appearance often produce debate among growers. Why do the cannabis seeds look different and do these differences result in slightly different growth characteristics in the plants which grow from them?