Invasive Plant

Garlic mustard

Alliaria petiolata

About This Species

Garlic mustard is a biennial – in the first year, plants appear as a rosette of green leaves close to the ground; these rosettes remain green through the winter and develop into mature flowering plants the following spring. It grows from a long white taproot that smells like horseradish. It is considered a noxious weed throughout the province.

How to Identify

In their second year, plants grow from 30–100 cm (rarely to 130 cm) tall. The leaves are stalked, triangular to heart-shaped, 10–15 cm long and 5–9 cm wide, with a coarsely toothed margin (like a saw’s edge). Flowers are small and white with 4 petals arranged in a cross-like shape. The fruit is a pod containing 2 rows of shiny black seeds

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Take Action

Prevent the spread of garlic mustard by brushing off your shoes, clothing, and any recreational equipment prior to leaving areas infested with Garlic mustard. Smaller patches of garlic mustard can be hand-pulled. If the infestation is larger, regular mowing can help control the population.

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