Canadian: Absent from Canada (Brouillet et al. 2016Footnote 1).
Worldwide: Native to eastern Europe, the Middle East and central Asia. Introduced to Australia, southern Europe and the western United States (CFIA 2012Footnote 2, 2014Footnote 3).
Duration of life cycle
Seed or fruit type
Seed length: 3.4 - 5.9 mm
Seed width: 1.6 - 3.9 mm
Seed thickness: 1.0 mm
Ovate to D-shaped seed, strongly compressed
Seed surface covered with a bubbled crust
Surface crust is grey to yellowish-white, seed is translucent red
Habitat and crop association
Dry rangelands, grasslands and disturbed areas, including roadsides, corrals and gravel pits (CFIA 2014Footnote 3).
Syrian bean-caper is thought to have been imported into the United States in contaminated alfalfa seed (Davison and Wargo 2001Footnote 4). This species usually spreads by seed, but can also generate new plants from pieces of its roots (CFIA 2014Footnote 3).
Syrian bean-caper prefers dry habitats, especially rangelands, where it out-competes native species (Davison and Wargo 2001Footnote 4).