• Lesquerella: A Winter Oilseed Crop for the Southwest

      Wang, Guangyao (Sam); McCloskey, William; Foster, Mike; Dierig, David; Plant Sciences, School of (College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 2010-07)
      Lesquerella (Lesquerella fendleri) is a member of the mustard family and is native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. The oil in lesquerella seeds has superior performance compared to castor, soybean, and rapeseed methyl esters in reducing wear and damage in fuel injected diesel engines. Lesquerella can also be used as an ingredient for a number of other bioproducts such as lubricants, motor oils, plastics, inks, and adhesives. The hydroxylated oil in lesquerella is similar to castor oil but does not contain the deadly poison ricin. Therefore, lesquerella is a safer alternative to castor in the United States and can be handled both at the farm level and the oilseed processing level with industry standard equipment and technology. This article provide information to growers in planting, water and nutrient management, pest management, and harvesting of lesquerella as a potential alternative crop.