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    Shepherd's purse [Capsella bursa-pastoris]

    An annual seed-propagated weed germinating almost year-round with a spindle-shaped root, it can have many generations each year. Occurs on most soils, preferably on nitrogenous, loose, usually somewhat humus-rich loamy and sandy soils.


    Shepherd's purse - image 1

    Shepherd's purse - image 1

    Shepherd's purse - image 2

    Shepherd's purse - image 3

    Shepherd's purse - image 4

    Pest Profile

    • About the pest


      Cotyledons are very small, 2-3 mm in length, round to long ovate, short-stemmed (Picture 1). The basal leaves grow in a rosette, with stems, undivided to lobed or pinnated. Sparse stalk leaves are undivided, entire to serrated, with a broad auricle grasping the stem (Picture 2). Plants are rich in variations. The flowers are dense on protruding stems. The petals are white, obovate, protruding beyond the calyx. The plants can flower through most of the year except winter months. The pods are long, triangular heart-shaped, slightly emarginated (Picture 3). The approx. 2,000 to 40,000 seeds produced by each plant are light-brown, almost smooth (Picture 4) and remain viable in the soil for many years (16-35 years). Germination temperature from 2- 5 °C.

      Symptoms & Diagnosis


      Grain, beets, legumes, maize, winter rapeseed.