Wild Candytuft – Iberis amara

Wild Candytuft (Iberis amara) is sometimes known as Rocket Candytuft, Bitter Candytuft or Hyacinth Candytuft, is a member of the mustard family and often reaches a hight between 15 – 30cm.
The stem of this plant is bristly, with short hairs branching from the crown. The petals are white or a light violet in colour, with 4 petals of which 2 outermost are often 6mm in length and the innermost shorter petals are 3mm. The leaves of this plant alternate, with the lowest withering first, middle and upper leaves are then stalkless with a sparse toothed tip and slightly hairy.
This plant prefers a habitat in yards, roadsides and sometimes wastelands but is occasionally used as an ornamental plant. Wild Candytuft is named due to its bitter flavour as well as it forms a rounded tuft when in bloom. The flowers open into flattened clusters and each flower consists of 4 petals, which are typically white but can range to deep purple / lilac. The garden form of the Wild Candytuft is similar but it has larger flowers and is typicaly hairless.

Height: Up to 40cm
Flowering Time: May to August
Preferred Conditions: Wild Candytuft prefers a bare, south facing grassland environment of a chalky variety, it can be found in quarries and wasteland.

Wild Candytuft - Iberis amara