FLORA OF ICELAND elements: Arabidopsis (Cardaminopsis) petraea, northern rock-cress

Arabidopsis petraea also known as Cardaminopsis petraea ; the Northern Rock-cress is very common all over Iceland. It grows on rocky grounds and soils of gravel and sand. Characteristic are the rather long flower stems with one or two entire leaves sprouting from a small basal rosette with incised and or toothed leaves. The flowering stems usually creep over the soil, especially in later stages of the development. It flowers early, i.e. from May to June. Under favourable conditions the plants grow vigourously. However they also grow on the desert highlands where they stay minute like many other hardy species. Some of the highland regions seem to be completely without vegetation but closer inspection learns that many minute specimen of species grow there. The Northern Rock-cress is regarded as one of the most common plants of Iceland.
It is a member of the cabbage (= mustard) family) (Brassicaceae formerly known as Cruciferae). The Icelandic name of this species is Melablóm.

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A brief introduction to Iceland plants
Text & Photographs by Dick Vuijk - unless stated otherwise

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plant on rocky ground
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further developed plant growing under more marginal conditions
desert plantlet with one flower stalk
size impression
plant with seed pods
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on rocky ground


developed plant

desert plantlet


seed pods

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