Field Mustard


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Related to Field Mustard: Brassica rapa, Brassica campestris

Field Mustard

 

(Brassica campestris), an annual herbaceous plant of the family Cruciferae. The root is slender and stemlike; the stem is 20 to 100 cm tall. The green, mostly lyrate lower leaves are covered with bristly hairs. The upper leaves are blue-gray, ovate-lanceolate, and cordate-amplexicaul. The flowers are yellow and in racemes. The fruit, a pod with a conical beak, is 3 to 5 cm long. The spherical seeds are reddish brown with a gray tinge; they contain 35–45 percent rape oil. One thousand seeds weigh 1.5–3.2 g. The field mustard yields a substantial amount of nectar. There are winter and spring forms. The plant grows as a weed in the temperate zone of the northern hemisphere; in the USSR it is found almost everywhere in fields, gardens, and dumps. The field mustard is cultivated as an oil plant in Middle Asia, Afghanistan, India, Iran, China, and Western Europe. The young leaves are suitable for salad.