Family: Brassicaceae

Conserved name: Cruciferae

Popular name: Mustard Family

Taxonomic Position (according to Cronquist)

Kingdom                     :Plantae

Division                       :Magnoliophyta

Class                            :Magnoliopsida

Subclass                      :Dilleniidae

Order                           :Capparales

Family                         :Brassicaceae

Identifying characters of the family

  1. Herb with odorous
  2. Watery juice stem
  3. Flower Cruciform
  4. Four sepals, four petals
  5. Stamen six tetradynamous
  6. Fruit siliqua

Origin and Distribution

The family Brassicaceae consists of about 350 genera and 3000 species, found mainly in temperate and warm temperate parts of both the northern and southern Hemispheres. The highest concentration of species is in the areas from the periphery of the Mediterranean to Central Asia. In Bangladesh, this family is represented by 12 genera and 24 species.

General Morphological Features of the Family

Habit: Annual, biennial or perennial herbs, sometimes subshrubs or shrubs.

Stem: Stem erect, ascending or prostrate, sometimes absent.

Leaves: Leaves exstipulate, simple, entire or variously pinnately dissected, rarely trifoliolate or pinnately, bipinnately or palmately compound, petiolate or sessile

Inflorescence: Inflorescence bracteate or ebracteate racemes, corymbs or panicles, sometimes flowers solitary on long pedicels originating from axils of rosette leaves.

Flowers: Flowers hypogynous, mostly actinomorphic. Sepals 4, in 2 decussate pairs, free or rarely united. Petals 4, alternate with sepals, arranged in the form of a cross (cruciform, hence the earlier family name Cruciferae). rarely rudimentary or absent.

Androecium: Stamens 6, in 2 whorls, tetradynamous, rarely in 3 pairs of unequal length, sometimes stamens 2 or 4, very rarely 8-24. filaments slender, winged or appendaged. anthersdithecal, dehiscing by longitudinal slits.

Gynoecium: Ovary superior, sessile or borne on a distinct gynophore, mostly 2-locular and with a false septum connecting 2 placentae, placentation parietal, rarely apical, ovules anatropous or campylotropous. 1 -many per locule. style 1, distinct, obsolete or absent, stigma capitate or conical, entire or 2-lobed. sometimes lobes decurrent and free or connate.

Fruit: Fruit a capsule, siliqua or silicula, dehiscent or indehiscent, sometimes schizocarpic, nutlet-like, lomentaceous, or samaroid.

Seeds: Seeds without endosperm, uniseriately or biseriately arranged in each locule, aseriate when 1, winged or wingless, mucilaginous or not when wetted.

Floral formula:     âŠ•  or % ♂♀ K 2+2 C4A2+4 G(2-4)


Floral diagram:Brassicaceae Family (1)Table 1. Common cultivated crops of Brassicaceae family

Bangla NameEnglish NameScientific NamePlant parts usedUsefulness
SorishaMustardBrassica campestris L.SeedEdible oil
FulcopyCauliflwerB. oleracea Lvar. capitataInflorescencevegetable
BadhacopyCabbageB. oleracea Lvar. capitataLeafvegetable
MullaRadishRaphanus sativus L.Rootvegetable
BroccoliBroccoliB. oleracea L.var. italicaInflorescencevegetable
SalgomturnipBrassica rapaRootvegetable
KnolkholShoot Stemvegetable