Cauliflower, Brassica oleracea var. botrytis, is an herbaceous annual or biennial vegetable plant in the family Brassicaceae grown for its edible head. The head is actually a mass of abortive flowers (flowers which are unable to produce fruit or seed as they possess only female reproductive organs; the male organs are either underdeveloped or totally lacking). Cauliflower plants are shallow rooted with a small, thickened stem. The ribbed leaves branch off the top of the stem and are light green in color. The origin of cauliflower has not been definitively determined but its ancestor, wild cabbage, is thought to have originated in ancient Asia Minor.