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Author Topic: Solved: Pepper grass (mustard)  (Read 3727 times)

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Offline Tom

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Solved: Pepper grass (mustard)
« on: July 08, 2001, 03:19:15 PM »
There are two things most folks don't do when they walk through the woods or field, Look up or pay attention to what they are walking on.  There are some of the most interesting "little" things to be seen if we take note. An old Forester told me that the way to walk through the forest was to look up.  What he meant was to look for good trees and bad trees by studying the whole tree not just the Butt.

I still like to look down sometimes.  Do any of you know what this is?
Its seeds are round and flat with a dimple at the peak. Its leaves, when I can find any on the stem, are lanceolate and opposed.  It grows in the sun, on the side of the road or in a field to a height of 6 inches to 2 feet.

As kids we always chewed on it and as an adult I have forgotten it. I think I will find uses for it now and look forward to the culinary experience.

                                 


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Offline swampwhiteoak

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Re: ID just for fun 13
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2001, 07:04:06 AM »
Looks like it's in the mustard family (Brassicaceae) but I can't do any better than that.

Offline Tom

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Re: ID just for fun 13
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2001, 03:37:20 PM »
Sure you can.

My book says it grows everywhere from Maine to Fla.

I bet you walk on it most everyday.

Your awful close to naming it now.  ;D

See those little flowers growing underneath the subject in question? I want to know what those are too but I haven't been able to find even a hint of them in the key.  I found something that looks kind of like them but the verbage doesn't match the plant too good.  I'm going to put it on here in an "honest" effort to discover what it is when I get a decent picture. :-/
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Offline Don P

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Re: ID just for fun 13
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2001, 03:51:36 PM »
We're all behind you Swamp...Wayyyy behind you. :D
The future is a foreign country, they will do things differently there - Simon Winchester

Offline swampwhiteoak

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Re: ID just for fun 13
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2001, 06:15:59 AM »
Tom, you trying to make me get my book out? :P
Alright, I'll try again later.

Offline swampwhiteoak

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Re: ID just for fun 13
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2001, 11:52:02 AM »
Tom,
This is kinda tough.  The best I can come up with is Lepidium known mainly as the peppergrass genus.  Mustard grasses are tough because they all look pretty similar and without being able to look at the seed pods and leaves in person, it's pretty tough to follow a key.  FYI, I can't find any mustard in my book w/opposite leaves.

Question for you Tom,
How do you get your file size small enough?  I'm having problems uploading and I can't seem to get the files small enough (already in JPEG, tried w/both true color and 256bit color)

Don P-
Once you know what to look for IDing the mustard family is easy.  The seeds are always one of two ways-either long and pointy or short and ovate w/a line going down the middle.  Flowers are almost always either white,yellow, or sometimes with a little purple.  And all the flowers don't produce fruit at the same time, they do it staggered.  

For non-woody plants IDing the family is most important.  Then you can pretty much follow a key (it's a lot tougher over the 'net, though).  If you don't know the family then things get tough and technical real fast.  

Audubon books and Peterson's are OK but they don't include everything and can point you in the wrong direction if you're not careful.  FYI- I got one plant ID book that is 1100 pages :o ??? , but it does cover every single plant (in one state).

Offline CHARLIE

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Re: ID just for fun 13
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2001, 11:52:22 AM »
This is called a "Birdseed" plant.  At least that's what we used to call them when I was a youngster. ::)
Charlie
"Everybody was gone when I arrived but I decided to stick around until I could figure out why I was there !"

Offline Tom

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Re: ID just for fun 13
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2001, 01:14:46 PM »
Swampwhiteoak,

Pepper grass is good enough for me.  It is the seed stalk that I have seen everywhere and Charlie is right, we called it birdseed plant when we were little also.

Pepper grass is what the keys call it and if there are many then they all look alike to me.  That was a pretty good job.  

I still want to find out what those tiny little flowers are.

-----to get a picture under 15k use the optimizer that Jeff recommended in his post in "inside the Forum"
Attaching images   (Date posted: 03/15/01 at 23:04:19)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
You can now upload and attach an image to your post!

I have to be frugile with the file size because of limited space (Somebody want to underwrite the forum??) so pic is limited to 15K jpg or gif format. Get an image optimizer off the web to reduce your sizes! You can get one athttp://www.xat.com/called JPEG OPTIMIZER for free.

-----------------------------------

There are 3 optimizers on this xat site.  I tried using the jpeg optimizer (free)  and found that it didn't do everything I needed.  I use one of the others "image optimizer" and found it to do most of what I needed.  They have another called Pro optimizer and most of the functions  in it have been limited.  I wouldn't mind having it, and may one day, but the image optimizer works and is free.

You will find that you just have to play around with the size, cropping and optimization options to get the clearest and largest image that 15k will produce.  On a small picture the size #'s in the blue bar on top of the picture aren't represented but holding you cursor there will make it reappear.

Making the pictures gets to be fun too.
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Offline L. Wakefield

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Re: Solved: Pepper grass (mustard)
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2001, 04:44:24 PM »
   If I make out the little flowers at the bottom correctly- are they blue, 4 petals, growing on a flat grasslike stalk? I was always told this was 'blue-eyed grass', or sometimes 'Kentucky Blue Grass'. But I'm fairly sure it's not the actual grass species used and valued for forage.  lw
L. Wakefield, owner and operator of the beastly truck Heretik, that refuses to stay between the lines when parking

Offline Tom

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Re: Solved: Pepper grass (mustard)
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2001, 10:39:01 PM »
LW,

I'm not sure how good of a picture I can paint with words but here goes.

The flowers have four petals and are white or very pale blue with what looks like a blue or lavender dot at the base on the inside of each petal.  The flowers are about the size of the + sign on your keyboard and grow from a knob on the end of a stem that looks like a very tight, green pine cone.  Each flower comes out of one of the openings that would contain a seed on a pinecone.  The flowers seem to only be produced from one horizontal level of the cone at a time so they make it look as if the flowers are petals of a larger flower and the "cone" is the center like the eye on a black-eyed susan.

The stem is 4 sided sometimes and round at others.  The leaves are 1 to 2 inches long and about 1/2 as wide as long.  They have oval tips and some are sawtoothed on their upper 1/3 and around the tip. (some are smooth)

The stems are long and run along the ground for fairly good distances.  I have lifted some that were 4 feet long but they root prolifically and most every node/opposing leaf  is well rooted.
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Offline L. Wakefield

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Re: Solved: Pepper grass (mustard)
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2001, 09:11:42 AM »
   Well, that's definitely 'something else'- not what I was thinking, and dang if I can remember seeing one like that.
L. Wakefield, owner and operator of the beastly truck Heretik, that refuses to stay between the lines when parking


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