Oil Seed Rape
Oilseed rape, or in its more popular name Canola, is produced as a source of vegetal oil for the following uses: high dietary quality oil for human consumption (57-63% monounsaturated oil), canola meal as feedstock for animals and production of diesel fuel engines - as a replacement for diesel fuel.
Rapeseed grows best at temperatures of 10-25 °C, while optimum temperature for growth and production is 21 °C. Temperatures below 10 °C result in progressively poorer germination and emergence. During its lifecycle, the plant may be exposed to extreme temperatures, below zero in the winter (in case of autumn sowing) and over 30 °C in summer time. The plant is especially sensitive to heat stress at 27–30 °C during flowering and early pod-set; under drought conditions this can cause even more problems.
The crop grows best in medium-textured soil, but is successful on a wide range of soil textures, such as loam and clay, but sandy soils should be avoided. Soil pH at 5.7–7.0 is optimal. Yields of most cultivars may be markedly reduced, where pH is below 5.5, mainly due to susceptibility to P, Mo and Ca deficiencies. In pH >7.5 and above deficiencies of B, Cu, Fe, Mn, P and Zn are likely. Rapeseed will not tolerate waterlogged conditions, hence it requires well-drained soils. Crop rotation considerations are important when selecting a site for rapeseed production.