E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Descurainia sophioides (Fisch. ex Hook.) O.E. Schulz
northern tansy mustard (northern tansymustard)
Brassicaceae (Mustard family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Virginia Skilton  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #51369)

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Distribution of Descurainia sophioides
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Species Information

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Annual or sometimes biennial herb from a taproot; stems 10-150 cm tall; sparsely to densely hairy with starlike and stalked-glandular hairs.
Basal leaves few; stem leaves deeply once to thrice compound below, becoming once or twice pinnately compound above, 2-12 cm long, segments oblong to oblanceolate, 1-2 mm wide.
Racemes clustered at the top; flowers stalks spreading-ascending, often curved, 1-9 mm long, less than half the length of the siliques; petals yellowish, about length of sepals; sepals 1.5-2 mm long, yellowish.
Siliques, spreading-ascending, 16-33 mm long, 0.7-1 mm wide; style to 0.2 mm long; seeds in one row.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Moist to mesic roadsides, disturbed areas and waste places in the montane zone; rare in N BC; amphiberingian, N to AK, YT and NT and E to N to MB; E. Asia.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Descurainia sophioides

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 304 922 1828
Slope Gradient (%) 0 43 75
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
90 175 275
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
1 1 3
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: BG(5), BWBS(2), ESSF(1)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Sisymbrium sophioides Fisch. ex Hook.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References