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

Rorippa sylvestris (L.) Besser
creeping yellow cress (creeping yellowcress)
Brassicaceae (Mustard family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Robert Flogaus-Faust  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #29223)

E-Flora BC Static Map
Distribution of Rorippa sylvestris
Click here to view our interactive map and legend
Details about map content are available here
Click on the map dots to view record details.

Species Information

Click on the image below to view an expanded illustration for this species.

Perennial herb from slender rhizomes, often mat-forming; stems nearly erect to decumbent, 15-60 cm tall, usually branching from base, nearly glabrous.
Basal leaves in rosettes, these disappearing after the first year; stem leaves egg-shaped or oblong-oblanceolate to oblong egg-shaped, 4-10 cm long, deeply lobed to pinnately-cut, the divisions narrow, incised or sharply toothed to entire, slender-stalked.
Racemes numerous, dense and short; flower stalks spreading to ascending, (3) 6-12 mm long; petals yellow, 3-5 mm long; sepals 2-3 mm long, deciduous shortly after anthesis, the outer pair not pouched at base.
Siliques, linear, often curved upward, 1-2 cm long, 1-2 mm wide; beaks 0.5-1 mm long; seeds reddish-brown, 0.6-0.8 mm long, finely honeycombed, not margined.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Blooming Period:
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Brown
Present from Spring to Summer
Source:  The USDA

Habitat / Range

Lawns, waste places and fields in the lowland and montane zones; frequent on S Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and adjacent mainland, rare eastward and northward; introduced from Europe.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Rorippa sylvestris

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) 700 844 970
Slope Gradient (%) 0 11 48
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
180 219 258
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 5 7
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: ICH(1), IDF(1), PP(1), SBS(2)


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

Radicula sylvestris (L.) Druce

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References