London rocket

Sisymbrium irio

Summary 5

Sisymbrium irio is an annual herb with small, pale yellow petals in the family Brassicaceae also known as the mustard family. It is commonly known as London rocket and is considered a weed in much of the southwestern United States and other regions where it has been introduced.

Botanical Information 6

Sisymbrium irio is commonly called London rocket or rocket mustard. It is from the genus Sisymbrium L. (hedge mustard) and family Brassicaceae (mustard family). The London rocket has a yellow flower and a long green stem that can grow up to 3 feet tall. The plant flowers in winter and spring.

Ecological Information 7

This plant is native to southern Europe, western Mediterranean, western Asia, and north Africa. Although it is non-native in New Mexico, it can be found in many places including the Bosque. Its favorite habitat is fields, roads, orchards, vineyards, gardens, and other disturbed areas.

Ethnobotanical Information 7

This plant is edible and tastes like mustard. The edible parts of this plant are the flower, the young leaves, and the seeds. London rocket is typically only used sparingly as the flavor of this plant is hot and pungent. Several tribes including the Pima, Mohave, and Cahuilla would cook the greens and eat them during times of famine. There is one account of the Pima using the seeds for "sore eyes" by placing them under the eyelids to produce tears. (Note: Ethnographic reports often lack important contextual information and relevant traditional ecological knowledge.)

References 6

About the Author 7

Student author(s)*: Getsemani (age 13) and Sergio (age 12) from South Valley Academy

*The entries in this field guide have been edited by Yerba Mansa Project staff to ensure that they contain quality, fact-checked content and standardized formatting.

Sources and Credits

  1. (c) Erin and Lance Willett, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC-ND),
  2. (c) Anthony Mendoza, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC-SA),
  3. (c) Anthony Mendoza, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC-SA),
  4. (c) Jerry Pierce, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC-SA),
  5. Adapted by albuquerqueherbalism from a work by (c) Wikipedia, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA),
  6. Adapted by albuquerqueherbalism from a work by (c) kristen_himm, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)
  7. Adapted by albuquerqueherbalism from a work by (c) smiller33, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)

More Info

Range Map

iNat Map

Color yellow
Uses edible
Type herb