• Double O Arch

    Arches

    National Park Utah

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  • Wolfe Ranch/Delicate Arch Viewpoint Road Closed

    Due to flooding in Winter Camp and Salt Washes, the Delicate Arch trail is currently inaccessible.

  • Safety in Bear Country

    Black bears have been seen near Devils Garden Campground. Don't lure or feed them. Dispose of trash in designated receptacles; don't leave it in bags or other soft containers. Store food in vehicles or hard containers when not being prepared or consumed. More »

Mountain Pepperplant (Mountain Pepperweed, Peppergrass)

Lepidium montanum

Lepidium montanum

Family: Brassicaceae (A Utah Flora – Cruciferae) – Mustard Family

Perennial or biennial herbs; stems 1.2” to 3.9' (0.3 to 12 dm) tall

Leaves: basal or basal and alternate; simple; entire to pinnatifid; can have hairs; 0.2” to 5” (0.5 to 12.5 cm) long, 0.12” to 1” (3 to 25 mm) wide

Flowers: 4 white petals in the shape of a cross or crucifer; 4 sepals; typically 6 stamens (with 2 outer shorter than the inner 4); 1 pistil; flowers in corymbs or racemes; usually radially symmetrical; nectar glands commonly 4; petals 0.1 to 0.14” (2.5 to 3.5 mm) long

Pollinators: other Lepidium species are pollinated by insects

Fruits: silique - a pod with 2 compartments with a thin partition

Blooms in Arches National Park: March, April, May, June, July, August

Habitat in Arches National Park: desert shrub and pinyon-juniper communities

Location seen: widespread, upper Courthouse wash, Windows, Fiery Furnace parking lot, Devils Garden

Other: The genus name, “Lepidium”, is from the Greek “lepis” meaning “scale” and is a reference to the flattened shape of the fruit pods. The species name, “montanum”, means “of the mountains”.

Many plants in this family are weeds and they flower early because they are annual. Many vegetables are in this family– radish, cabbage, cauliflower. A few species of plants in this family are poisonous to livestock.

Did You Know?

Desert Bighorn Sheep

Once feared of becoming extinct, desert bighorn sheep are making a tentative comeback in southeast Utah due to reintroduction efforts by the National Park Service. There are roughly 50 sheep in Arches, though their shy nature keeps them well-hidden from most visitors. More...