Land cress (Barbarea verna)

Land cress (Barbarea verna), also known as American cress, bank cress, black wood cress,Belle Isle cress, Bermuda cress, early yellowrocket, early wintercress, scurvy cress, andupland cress, is a biennial herb in the family Brassicaceae. It is native to southwestern Europe, but is also cultivated in Florida. As it requires less water than watercress, it is easier to cultivate. Land cress has been cultivated as a leaf vegetable in England since the 17th century.

Land cress is considered a satisfactory substitute for watercress. It can be used in sandwiches, or salads, or cooked like spinach, or used in soup.

Land cress can be grown easily in any garden. Like watercress, it loves water, but does not do well when partially submerged for long periods of time. This perennial needs full sun and frequent watering in any garden, unless near a direct source of water.

Synonyms include Barbarea praecox and Lepidum nativum. Other common names include dryland cress, cassabully, and American watercress. A variegated form is available.

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