Perennial pepperweed

(Lepidium latifolium)

Perennial pepperweed (Lepidium latifolium) is an extremely invasive perennial forb introduced from Europe and Asia in 1900 as a containment in sugar beet seed. Pepperweed reproduces both by seed and vegetatively by roots and shoots. Root fragments as small as 0.5 inches can grow into new plants. A serious threat, pepperweed alters ecosystems by acting as a “salt pump” absorbing salts from deep in the soil. The plant then excretes the salt through the leaves and deposits it on the surface soil. Since most desirable plants do not tolerate high saline concentrated soils, the entire plant composition, and diversity of the area changes.

Perennial pepperweed fact sheet