Scientific Name: Lepidium virginicum
Also known as: Virginia Peppergrass, Peppergrass
Virginia pepperweed, or peppergrass, is a winter annual. The lower leaves of Virginia pepperweed form from a basal rosette, and are deeply lobed. The stem of Virginia pepperweed is erect and freely branched. The mature plant does not contain any basal rosette leaves, and the leaves on the stem are alternate and more lanceolate than the basal leaves. The flower of Virginia pepperweed is produced from May through early summer. The flowers are white and form in a finger-like cluster or bottle-brush at the top of the plant. The seeds of Virginia pepperweed germinate in late summer or early fall. Limited germination occurs in the spring. Virginia pepperweed can be found in throughout the United States except Arizona and New Mexico.
Virginia pepperweed (peppergrass) develops best in thin turf stands. It is usually found in low-maintenance turf areas. It usually is found in full-sun dry areas. If there are only a few plants, physical removal can prevent establishment. Virginia pepperweed germinates when the soil is cool, and can invade fall plantings of cool-season turf that have not developed. Low mowing will prevent the seedhead from developing, preventing the development of new seed.
Make your post-emergence herbicide application to Virginia pepperweed that is actively growing and in the seedling to flower stage of growth.
Weed Photos: Courtesy of Dr. Lambert McCartey. Clemson University. Clemson, SC.