Synonym: Dimorphocarpa wislizenii
Family: Brassicaeae (A Utah Flora – Cruciferae) – Mustard Family
Annual or winter annual herbs from taproots; stems 2.8” to 1.6' (0.7 to 5 dm) tall
Leaves: alternate; simple; pinnatifid; 0.48” to 3.8” (1.2 to 9.5 cm) long, 0.08” to 1” (2 to 25 mm) wide
Flowers: 4 white petals (the claws are sometimes lavender); petals are in the shape of a cross – crucifer; petals 0.19” to 0.32” (4.8 to 8 mm) long; 4 sepals; 6 stamens (with 2 outer shorter than the inner 4); 1 pistil; flowers in racemes; nectar glands commonly 4
Pollinators: other genera in this family are pollinated by insects (butterflies, moths, bees and flies); some self-fertile
Fruits: silique - a pod with 2 compartments with a thin partition
Blooms in Arches National Park: April, May
Habitat in Arches National Park: sandy areas in desert shrub, grassland and pinyon-juniper communities
Location seen: park road north of Petrified Dunes, Windows primitive trail, Delicate Arch road, Fiery Furnace
Other: The genus name, “Dithyrea”, means “two shields” which describes the seed pods. The species name, “wislizenii”, honors Friedrich Adolph Wislizenus (1810-1889) a German physician who immigrated to the United States in 1835, joined a trading caravan to Mexico in 1846 and made observations on the local flora and fauna.
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.
Last updated: February 24, 2015