shy wallflower

(Erysimum inconspicuum var. inconspicuum)

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not listed

shy wallflower


N5? - Secure

SNR - Unranked


not listed






Dry. Prairies, woodland openings, railroads, roadsides.


May to August

Flower Color

Light yellow to yellow


12 to 32


This is a 12 to 32 tall, erect, biennial or short-lived perennial forb that rises on 1 or a few stems from a thickened caudex.

The stems are erect, hairless, grayish-green, and usually unbranched below the inflorescence. They are densely covered with hairs that lay flat and have two branches that extend in opposite directions, appearing as a straight line.

Basal leaves are linear to narrowly inversely lance-shaped, to 2 long, and 1 16 to 5 16 wide. They are not lobed. The leaf blade tapers gradually to a narrow point at the base and tapers to a point at the tip with straight sides along the tip. The upper surface is covered with a mix of 2-branched and 3-branched hairs. The margins are usually untoothed, sometimes toothed with shallow, broad teeth.

Stem leaves are alternate, mostly erect or ascending, rarely more than 3 16 wide, and otherwise similar to basal leaves. Lower stem leaves taper at the base to short leaf stalks. Upper stem leaves taper at the base to the stem. They do not partially or completely surround the stem at the base.

The inflorescence is a densely-flowered, unbranched, elongated cluster (raceme) at the end of the stem. The flowers are not subtended by bracts. They are held stiffly erect on stout, ascending, to long stalks.

Each flower is about ½ to ¾ wide. There are 4 sepals, 4 petals, and 6 stamens. The sepals are green, erect, linear to narrowly oblong, and to ¼ long. They are densely covered with star-shaped hairs. The lateral pair of sepals are slightly shaped like a pouch or sack at the base. The petals are light yellow to yellow and are not conspicuously dark-veined. They are inversely lance-shaped, ¼ to long. They are unlobed, rounded at the tip, and abruptly narrowed to a 3 16 to ¼ long stalk-like base (claw). There are 6 stamens, 2 short, outer stamens and 4 longer, 3 16 to ¼ long, inner stamens. There is one 1 32 to 1 16 long style with a 2-lobed stigma.

The fruits are narrow pods held erect or ascending on 3 16 to ½ long stalks. The fruit stalk (pedicel) is noticeably narrower than the fruit. Each fruit is narrowly linear, 13 16 to 2 long, and 1 32 to 1 16 wide. It is round or slightly 4-angled in cross section. It is not striped and is not constricted between the seeds. It is covered with 2- to 4-branched hairs. When mature the pod splits and the two sides fall away leaving the transparent interior partition attached to the plant.



Distribution Distribution Map   Sources: 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 28.




Brassicaceae (mustard)





Cheiranthus inconspicuus

Cheirinia syrticola

Cheirinia syrticola


shy wallflower

small wormseed mustard

small worm-seed mustard

smallflower wallflower











Modified leaf at the base of a flower stalk or flower cluster.



A short, thickened, woody, persistent enlargement of the stem, at or below ground level, used for water storage.



A stalk-like narrowed base of some petals and sepals.



Long, straight, and narrow, with more or less parallel sides, like a blade of grass.



An unbranched, elongated inflorescence with stalked flowers. The flowers mature from the bottom up.



An outer floral leaf, usually green but sometimes colored, at the base of a flower.

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