The species Erysimum cheiranthoides is a troublesome weed of canola crops in Western Canada, and cereal crops in Eastern Canada. Its seed is poisonous to livestock if consumed in high quantities, and because of its pungent odour, stock tends not to eat infested grain. Wormseed mustard is extremely difficult to distinguish between other mustard family weeds; therefore, identification can be very difficult. It is an annual or winter annual, spreading by seed.
Wormseed mustard is distinguished from other mustards by its slender leaves, which do not clasp the stem. It has two-branched hairs on the stems and three-branched hairs on the leaves which can be seen with proper magnification. The E. cheiranthoides species is an erect plant from 6 inches to 2 feet in height, with dark green, lance-shaped, sparsely toothed leaves.
Optimal growth conditions
Wormseed Mustard can be found growing commonly in Ontario and can flourish in varying soil types, from clay to rich loams. The slender seed pods grow erect on spreading stalks. The seeds within the pods are very small and a reddish to yellow in colour