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Crop wild relatives

Plant in focus: Turnip

Brassica rapa is a diverse wild plant species known with several common names: wild turnip, field mustard, turnip mustard, wild mustard, wild kale or bird rape. It has bright yellow flowers which attract bees. Brassica rapa has several subspecies with different uses as crop plants. Turnip (Brassica rapa subsp. rapa) is used as a root vegetable. It’s a biannual plant with a swollen, wide and tuberous root. Field mustard (Brassica rapa subsp. oleifera) is used as oilseed crop. It’s an annual plant with a thin root. The leafy forms are used as leaf vegetables such as pak choi (Brassica rapa subsp. chinensis). Out of these, wild turnip and field mustard have distribution in the Nordic region