Thlaspi arvense

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Thlaspi arvense
Thlaspi arvense1 eF.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Brassicales
Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Thlaspi
Species: T. arvense
Binomial name
Thlaspi arvense

Thlaspi arvense (common name field penny-cress) is a foetid Eurasian plant having round flat pods; naturalized throughout North America. It is also related to the Lepidium genus in the cabbage family.

Edible uses[edit]

The field pennycress has a bitter taste; it is usually parboiled to remove the bitter taste. This is mostly used in salads, sometimes in sandwich spreads. It is said to have a distinctive flavour.

Use as a source of biodiesel[edit]

Pennycress is being developed as an oilseed crop for production of renewable fuels.[1][2] The species can be planted in the fall, will germinate and form a vegetative mass which can overwinter. In the spring, the oil-rich seed can be harvested and used as a biodiesel feedstock.


Pennycress is related to the model plant species Arabidopsis thaliana. Researchers have begun studying the genetics of pennycress in order to improve its potential use as a biofuel crop. For example, the transcriptome of pennycress has been sequenced.[3]



  1. ^ Arvegenix LLC website
  2. ^ Field pennycress shows feedstock potential
  3. ^ De novo assembly of the pennycress (Thlaspi arvense) transcriptome provides tools for the development of a winter cover crop and biodiesel feedstock. Kevin M. Dorn, Johnathon D. Fankhauser, Donald L. Wyse, M. David Marks. The Plant Journal. doi:10.1111/tpj.12267