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Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs


Other Common Names Include:  Falseflax, linseed dodder, gold-of-pleasure, wild flax

Latin Name: Camelina sativa L. Crantz

Plant Family: Brassicaceae

Close Relatives: Canola (Brassica napus), Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana)

Uses and Markets: Culinary: oil is an excellent source of omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids.  Personal care products: oil has been used in the formulation of cosmetics, skin creams and lotions. Bioenergy; oil is used for biodiesel production. Industrial: oil use for lubricants.   Animal feed: camelina seed meal could be used as animal feed, but is not registered in Canada for this use.

C. sativa plants growing in a demonstration plot.C. sativa seeds
Production Life Cycle in Ontario


Hardiness Zone


Special Notes

Camelina can be sown in late fall as a winter annual, or in spring.  Fall seeding under no-till conditions seems to work more successfully.

Propagation method

Seed at 4-6 kg/ha to achieve a stand of 400-600 plants/m2.  Seed at a depth of 0.625 cm (1/4 inch).

Greenhouse Seeding/Propagation Dates


Field Seeding Date:

Late fall or early spring.

Field Transplanting Dates


In-row spacing


Between row spacing


Optimal Soil temperature at planting

>5°C (In Minnesota, camelina has been  broadcast onto frozen ground in early December under no-till conditions).


No current Ontario fertility recommendations exist. Research and recommendations from outside Ontario do not necessarily apply to Ontario growing conditions. Research from from the U.S. indicates C. sativa has similar fertility requirements to mustard or flax.  Click here for phosphorus and potassium application guidelines and for more information on specialty crop fertility.

Soil type

Well-drained soils, light to medium textured soils.

Soil pH

Acidic to alkaline soils.

Special requirements for growth habit

Maximum yields are obtained when flowering occurs before the hottest days of the summer.  Camelina will grow in marginal soil.

Optimal Temperature Range


Temperature sensitivity

Frost Tolerant, heat tolerant.

Irrigation requirements

Camelina is drought tolerant.

Days to harvest

80-100 days

Specialized equipment


Harvest Scheduling

Single harvest

Hand harvest or machine harvest

Machine harvest

Quality parameters/grades

Quality based on final seed moisture.

Additional Harvest Notes

Harvest when pods are brown. Seed is extremely small (1000 seed weight = 1-2 grams). Standard canola harvesting practices can be followed (see OMAFRA Agronomy Guide for Field Crops Publication 811), but combines will need properly sized screens.

Post harvest
Special handling/curing

Seed moisture must be below 8%.

Storage Conditions

Relative humidity (RH): Low

Temperature: Cool

Air Exchange: N/A

Duration: N/A

Specific pests observed on this crop in Ontario (observations based on limited experience with this crop)

Insects and Invertebrates: Flea beetles


Other Potential Pests: The following pests have not been observed on this crop in Ontario. However, they are either significant concerns for closely related plants in Ontario, or are reported on this crop in other production areas. This is not a comprehensive list of all potential pests. Not all of these pests will necessarily survive Ontario’s climate, but could potentially survive in a protected environment (e.g. greenhouse, storage facility).

Insects and Invertebrates:

Diseases: Downy mildew (Peronospora camelinae)

*Indicates pests commonly mentioned as causing significant damage or economic loss to this crop in other regions. 


Camelina seed can act as a vector for the transmission of Turnip Yellow Mosaic virus.  Camelina shows resistance to blackleg (Lepotosphaeria maculans), and to Alternaria brassicae.  To date the following pests have been the most significant in Ontario: flea beetles. Pests of canola and other oilseeds in Ontario may affect camelina.  This crop is in the revised Crop Group 20:  Oilseeds Group (revised 10/05/07) and subgroup 20A: Rapeseed Subgroup. For more information on Crop Groups, refer to the Pest section.  Some pesticides may be registered on this crop. Always refer to product labels, and follow all directions specified on the label, before applying any pest control product.  For more information, consult an OMAFRA specialist.

Additional Notes


Ontario Research Projects Used to Create This Profile


  1. Agronomy Guide for Field Crops.  Publication 811.  Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
  2. Gugel, R.K. and K.C. Falk.  2006.  Agronomic and seed quality evaluation of Camelina sativa in western Canada.  Can. J. Plant Sci. 86: 1047-1058.
  3. Johnson, E.N. et al, 2008.  Agronomy of Camelina sativa and Brassica carinata.  Western Applied Research Corporation, 2008 Annual Report.
  4. Putnam, D.H., J.T. Budin, L.A. Field and W.M. Breene.  1993.  Camelina: A promising low-input oilseed.  P. 314-322. In:  J. Janick and J.E. Simon (eds), New Crops.  Wiley, New York.
  5. Urbaniak, S.D., C.D. Caldwell, V.D. Zheljazkov, R. Lada and L. Luan. 2008.  The effect of seeding rate, seeding date and seeder type on the performance of Camelina sativa L. in the Maritime Provinces of Canada.  Can. J. Plant Sci. 88:501-508.
  6. Zubr, J.  1997.  Oil-seed crop:  Camelina sativa.  Industrial Crops and Products.  6:113-119.