Medium sized butterfly measuring up to 2 1/2" in length. The upperside of the male has a black checkered pattern. The female is more heavily patterned, but the markings are more brown and diffuse. The hindwing is white. The underside of the male has a pale checkered pattern. The underside of the female has yellow-tan markings. The caterpillar is gray with yellowish-orange stripes and small black dots.
Weedlots, roadsides, and cultivated fields.
Yellow eggs are laid on leaves and flowers of host plants.
Adults born during cooler parts of the year tend to be smaller and darker in color.
Caterpillars feed on leaves, flowers, buds, and fruits of host plants. Larval host plants include the native poor-man's-pepper (Lepidium virginicum) and species in the mustard family such as cabbage (Brassica oleracea). Nectar host plants include the nonnative alfalfa (Medicago sativa).