Analysis of yield and plant traits of oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) cultivated in temperate region in light of the possibilities of sowing in arid areas

Tadeusz Zając, Agnieszka Klimek-Kopyra, Andrzej Oleksy, Anna Lorenc-Kozik, Karolina Ratajczak


This work is a review of selected literature on the species of Brassica with the greatest economic significance. Oilseed rape (Brassica napus ssp. oleifera) currently ranks third worldwide among oilseed crops used for oil production and is the most important in the temperate zone. The manifold uses of rape include not only human consumption of oil, but also the use of post-extraction meal to feed livestock as well as industrial applications as a source of bioenergy or cellulose. The improvement in the economic position of rape among crop plants is also due to the doubling of its yield between 1970 and 2009; the average annual increase in seed yield worldwide was 27 kg ha−1 yr−1. The yield level in Europe exceeds the average yields achieved in the world, particularly in Asia. Recently, the cultivation of oilseed rape was started on a relatively large acreage in Iran where the yield amounted 2.1 t ha−1, exceeding the yields of China and India. In Poland, the acreage of oilseed rape cultivation between 1965 and 2013 increased 3–4 times, and during this period the annual increase in seed yield was 29 kg ha−1 yr−1. Under the field conditions of the temperate climate zone, winter oilseed rape yield is mainly determined by agro-climatic conditions during the growing period, the level of nitrogen fertilization, and the production potential of varieties, which is currently highest in hybrids. There is a noticeable tendency of hybrids towards formation of more siliques by individual oilseed plants. Different production categories of plants appear in a rape crop. Semi-dwarf varieties of winter rapeseed are distinguished by greater silique density, particularly on the main shoot. Moreover, these hybrids are characterized by faster growth of the root system, which enables them to take up nitrogen from the soil more efficiently.


cultivars; seed yield components; aboveground and belowground biomass

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