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Know your weeds: Hoary Cress or Whitetop


USU Extension Agriculture Agent

As you drive around in the city, around the county and on the state highways or interstate you can easily see hoary cress starting to bloom now. Hoary cress is a Utah noxious weed. This means that property owners or managers have a legal responsibility to control/eliminate the plant.

Hoary cress can grow to 2 feet tall. It has dense clusters of small white flowers at the top of the plant. The slightly hairy leaves are long (up to 4 inches) and narrow (up to 1 1/2 inches) and have a bluish green or grayish green color. The plants are usually erect, but can lay down later in the season.

Hoary cress is a perennial that is quite difficult to control. The best option for homeowners is to spray it with 2-4,D just as it is blooming, which is right now.

Height-up to 2 feet on erect stems

Flowers-small, white, in dense clusters

Leaves-bluish green or grayish green, long and narrow


For more information call the Carbon County Extension Office at 636-3233.

Ron Patterson is the Utah State University Extension Agriculture Agent for Carbon County. He can be reached at 435-636-3233. Utah State University is an affirmative action/equal opportunity institution.

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