The Brassicales (or Cruciales) are an order of flowering plants, belonging to the eurosids II group of dicotyledons under the APG II system.[2] One character common to many members of the order is the production of glucosinolate (mustard oil) compounds. Most systems of classification have included this order, although sometimes under the name Capparales (the name chosen depending on which is thought to have priority).[3]

Alliaria petiolata, garlic mustard (Brassicaceae)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Clade: Malvids
Order: Brassicales

The order typically contains the following families:[4]


The following diagram shows the phylogeny of the Brassicales families along with their estimated ages, based on a 2018 study of plastid DNA:[5]

Brassicales families



























Phylogentic relationships based on data from plastid DNA. The numbers next to each branching point indicate its estimated date (million years ago). Families with more than 30 species are in bold.

On 20 April 2020, a newly described monotypic species from Namibia, namely, Tiganophyton karasense Swanepoel, F.Forest & A.E. van Wyk is placed under this order as a monotypic member of new family Tiganophytaceae, which is closely related to Bataceae, Salvadoraceae and Koeberliniaceae.[6]

Historic classifications

Under the Cronquist system, the Brassicales were called the Capparales, and included among the "Dilleniidae". The only families included were the Brassicaceae and Capparaceae (treated as separate families), the Tovariaceae, Resedaceae, and Moringaceae. Other taxa now included here were placed in various other orders.

The families Capparaceae and Brassicaceae are closely related. One group, consisting of Cleome and related genera, was traditionally included in the Capparaceae but doing so results in a paraphyletic Capparaceae.[3] Therefore, this group is generally now either included in the Brassicaceae or as its own family, Cleomaceae.[4][7]


  1. Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2009). "An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG III". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 161 (2): 105–121. doi:10.1111/j.1095-8339.2009.00996.x.
  2. Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2003). "An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG II" (PDF). Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 141 (4): 399–436. doi:10.1046/j.1095-8339.2003.t01-1-00158.x. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2022-10-09.
  3. Jocelyn C. Hall, Kenneth J. Sytsma & Hugh H. Iltis (2002). "Phylogeny of Capparaceae and Brassicaceae based on chloroplast sequence data". American Journal of Botany. 89 (11): 1826–1842. doi:10.3732/ajb.89.11.1826. PMID 21665611.
  4. Elspeth Haston; James E. Richardson; Peter F. Stevens; Mark W. Chase; David J. Harris (2007). "A linear sequence of Angiosperm Phylogeny Group II families". Taxon. 56 (1): 7–12. doi:10.2307/25065731. JSTOR 25065731.
  5. Edger, Patrick P.; Hall, Jocelyn C.; Harkess, Alex; Tang, Michelle; Coombs, Jill; Mohammadin, Setareh; Schranz, M. Eric; Xiong, Zhiyong; Leebens-Mack, James; Meyers, Blake C.; Sytsma, Kenneth J.; Koch, Marcus A.; Al-Shehbaz, Ihsan A.; Pires, J. Chris (2018). "Brassicales phylogeny inferred from 72 plastid genes: A reanalysis of the phylogenetic localization of two paleopolyploid events and origin of novel chemical defenses". American Journal of Botany. 105 (3): 463–69. doi:10.1002/ajb2.1040.
  6. Swanepoel, Wessel; Chase, Mark W.; Christenhusz, Maarten J.M.; Maurin, Olivier; Forest, Félix; van Wyk, Abraham E. (2020). "From the frying pan: an unusual dwarf shrub from Namibia turns out to be a new brassicalean family". Phytotaxa. 439 (3): 171–185. doi:10.11646/phytotaxa.439.3.1.
  7. Jocelyn C. Hall, Hugh H. Iltis & Kenneth J. Sytsma (2004). "Molecular phylogenetics of core Brassicales, placement of orphan genera Emblingia, Forchhammeria, Tirania, and character evolution" (PDF). Systematic Botany. 29 (3): 654–669. doi:10.1600/0363644041744491. S2CID 86218316. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-04-01. Retrieved 2016-08-26.
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