Submitted to: Rangelands
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: December 19, 2006
Publication Date: August 15, 2007
Citation: Young, J.A., Clements, C.D., Harmon, D.N. 2007. Shieldcress. Rangelands. 29(4):33-37. Interpretive Summary: Shieldcress is an exotic, invasive annual rangeland weed that has been a minor species on Intermountain Area rangelands for many years. Recently, it has become a dominant species on millions of acres of salt desert and Wyoming big sagebrush rangelands. In this new role as a dominant species, shieldcress decreases forage production and utilization as well as changing the wildfire characteristics of the invaded sites.
Technical Abstract: Shieldcress (Lepidium perfolatum) is an exotic, self invasive annual weed native to Central Asia. It was introduced to the Intermountain Area early in the 20th century. For many years it has been a minor weed species found in the area between the salt desert and Wyoming big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis) vegetation zones. Either the weed has changed and become more competitive or the environment of the degraded communities has changed to allow this spread and dominance. This dominance has decreased forage and utilization as well as changing the wildfire characteristics of these invaded sites.