Garlic mustard Alliaria petiolata

Also known as: jack-by-the-hedge

Best time to see: early Apr to mid Jul

Key facts

Small heads of white flowers over nettle-like leaves, common beside hedgerows on moist soils

Its leaves smell of garlic when crushed and this is believed to deter insect attackers

An invasive plant outside its natural habitat, it has become a pest in parts of the world where it has been introduced


Food plant for caterpillars of the orange tip butterfly: look for the orange eggs laid on the flower head

  • Main photo
  • flower

Photo © Tony Gunton

Photo © Owen Keen