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Rapeseed (Brassica napus)

   Rapeseed (Brassica napus), fam. Brassicaceae.
   Economical value of rapeseed has significantly grown in the end of XX century, due to beginning of its use for biodiesel production. Traveling through the fields of Ukraine in May, one may see beautiful spaces of blooming rapeseed, yellow to the very horizon. The rapeseed oil, while being profitable for making fuel and for technical applications, has very undesirable effect on people's or animal's health in case of food consumption. It contains a lot of harmful erucic fatty acid. The rapeseed meal left after oil extraction has other toxic and irritating components, which can be only partially neutralised by heating. Despite the efforts of selectionists, it has not been possible yet to get rid of these drawbacks.
   Anyway, the wide abundancy of rapeseed in agriculture leads to the fact that it is often possible to see growing wild along the roads, where its seeds are brought occasionally. The plant has round-lobed leaves, with bluish taint. The main flower spikes blooms the first; in one or two weeks, the lateral shoots join it in blooming.

Rapeseed (Brassica napus) Rapeseed (Brassica napus) Rapeseed (Brassica napus)