Description:
A annual herb to 400 mm tall, with star and simple hairs, a basal rosette of leaves and erect stems bearing heart shaped pods. It has small, white 4 petalled flowers in winter and spring.
As A Soil Indicator:
Very low Calcium, High Phosphorous, Very high Magnesium, High Manganese, High Iron, High Sulphur, High Copper, High Zinc, High Boron, High Chloride, High Selenium, High Aluminum  Very little organic matter,  High Salt, , More common on heavy grey clays and red brown earths.
Life cycle: 
Annual. Germination occurs in autumn to early winter or spring. The mature plant is erect in habit with a rosette which, depending on competition at ground level, may persist for much of its life. It flowers in late winter to spring and dies in summer.

Beneficial:
Cooked stems and leaves formerly used as a vegetable. Considered a medicinal herb.
Detrimental:
May taint milk. May discolour egg yolks. Relatively unpalatable and grazed sparingly.
Toxicity:
There have been report of animals that have died from fibre balls but only after consuming large quantities.

Download PDF

What to read next?