Wikijunior:Summer Flowers of Northern New England/Lepidium virginicum< Wikijunior:Summer Flowers of Northern New England
Virginia Pepperweed is not a stunningly pretty plant. The flowers are tiny and grow at the tip of the stem. After a while, the flowers mature and turn into seeds, but the stem grows some more, and new flowers appear at the tip. The seeds are round with a stripe running down the center from the notched tip to the stem. This is kind of a weedy plant, growing near sidewalks (sometimes between the cracks), next to fire hydrants, stop signs, and railroad tracks. Although the plant isn't very pretty to look at, it does have a secret, and its name gives a little hint about this secret. If you strip off a handful of the seeds, pop them into your mouth, and chew them up, you will see why they call it a Pepperweed!