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bird's rape, bird-rape, canola, common mustard, field-mustard, rape, rapeseed, turnip, turnip-rape, wild-rape, wild-turnip

Mediterranean cabbage

Habit Annuals or biennials; (roots fleshy or slender); (green to slightly glaucous), glabrous or sparsely hairy. Annuals, biennials, or perennials; glabrous or nearly so.

unbranched or branched distally, 3–10 dm.

branched distally, 3–9 dm.

Basal leaves

petiole (winged), (1–)2–10(–17) cm;

blade ± lyrate-pinnatifid to pinnate to pinnatisect, (5–)10–40(–60) cm × 30–100(–200) mm, (margins sinuate-dentate, sometimes ciliate), lobes 2–4(–6) each side, (terminal lobe oblong-obovate, obtuse, large, blade surfaces usually setose).

(early deciduous);

petiole 1.5–6 cm;

blade lyrate-pinnatifid, 3–10(–15) cm × 10–65 mm, lobes 1–3 (or 4) each side.

Cauline leaves

(middle and distal) sessile;

base auriculate to amplexicaul, (margins subentire).

shortly petiolate;

blade (often lanceolate, reduced in size distally), base tapered or cuneate, not auriculate, (apex acute).


not paniculately branched, (with open flowers overtopping or equal to buds).

paniculately branched.


sepals (3–)4–6.5(–8) × 1.5–2 mm;

petals deep yellow to yellow, obovate, 6–11(–13) × (2.5–)3–6(–7) mm, claw 3–7 mm, apex rounded;

filaments 4–6(–7) mm;

anthers 1.5–2 mm.

sepals 3–8 × 1–1.7 mm;

petals pale yellow, narrowly obovate, 7–15 × 3–4 mm, claw 2–3 mm, apex rounded;

filaments 3–6 mm;

anthers 1.5–2 mm;

gynophore 1–1.5 mm in fruit.

Fruiting pedicels

ascending to spreading, (5–)10–25(–30) mm.

spreading to divaricately ascending, (slender), (5–)10–15(–25) mm.


ascending to somewhat spreading, torulose, terete, (2–)3–8(–11) cm × 2–4(–5) mm;

valvular segment with 8–15 seeds per locule, (1.3–)2–5(–7.5) cm, terminal segment seedless, 8–22 mm.

(stipitate), spreading to divaricately ascending, strongly torulose, linear, subcylindric, 1.5–3 cm × 1.5–2 mm;

valvular segment with 5–13 seeds per locule, 1.2–2.5 cm, terminal segment seedless or 1-seeded, (conic), 3–6 mm.


black, brown, or reddish, 1.1–2 mm diam.;

seed coat very finely reticulate-lightly alveolate, not mucilaginous when wetted.

brown or yellow, 0.6–1.2 mm diam.;

seed coat finely reticulate-alveolate, not mucilaginous when wetted.


= 20.

= 16.

Brassica rapa

Brassica fruticulosa

Phenology Flowering Apr–Sep. Flowering Dec–Mar.
Habitat Roadsides, disturbed areas and waste places, cultivated fields, grain fields, orchards, gardens Coastal plains and basins, deserts, valleys
Elevation 0-1500 m [0-4900 ft] 0-300 m [0-1000 ft]
from FNA
AK; AL; AR; AZ; CA; CO; CT; DC; DE; FL; GA; IA; ID; IL; IN; KS; KY; LA; MA; MD; ME; MI; MN; MO; MS; MT; NC; ND; NE; NH; NJ; NM; NV; NY; OH; OK; OR; PA; RI; SC; SD; TN; TX; UT; VA; VT; WA; WI; WV; WY; AB; BC; MB; NB; NL; NS; NT; ON; PE; QC; SK; YT; Europe; Asia; Africa [Introduced in North America; introduced also in Mexico, West Indies, Central America, South America, Atlantic Islands, Australia]
[WildflowerSearch map]
[BONAP county map]
from FNA
CA; s Europe; nw Africa [Introduced in North America]
[BONAP county map]

Brassica rapa is widely cultivated as an oil crop and vegetable, and cultivars, especially in Asia, have been recognized as species, subspecies, and varieties. The most important crops include: rapeseed or canola, turnip (subsp. rapa), Chinese mustard or pakchoi [subsp. chinensis (Linnaeus) Hanelt], and Chinese cabbage or petsai [subsp. pekinensis (Loureiro) Hanelt]. The species is also a widespread naturalized weed [subsp. sylvestris (Linnaeus) Janchen] throughout temperate North America and elsewhere. It is self-incompatible. Hybridization in the field in Europe has been described between B. napus and B. rapa (R. B. Jørgensen and B. Andersen 1994).

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Brassica fruticulosa is naturalized in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, and San Mateo counties.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Source FNA vol. 7, p. 423. FNA vol. 7, p. 421.
Parent taxa Brassicaceae > tribe Brassiceae > Brassica Brassicaceae > tribe Brassiceae > Brassica
Sibling taxa
B. elongata, B. fruticulosa, B. juncea, B. napus, B. nigra, B. oleracea, B. tournefortii
B. elongata, B. juncea, B. napus, B. nigra, B. oleracea, B. rapa, B. tournefortii
Synonyms B. campestris, B. campestris var. oleifera, B. chinensis, B. pekinensis, B. rapa subsp. chinensis, B. rapa subsp. pekinensis, Sinapis pekinensis
Name authority Linnaeus: Sp. Pl. 2: 666. (1753) Cirillo: Pl. Rar. Neapol. 2: 7. (1792)
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