Oats (Avena; Ukrainian: oves). A cereal of the family Gramineae, which includes A. euavena, an annual species, and A. avenastrum, a perennial steppe and meadow grass. The plants have a fibrous root system, linear leaves, and a one-seeded fruit. Oats may be a spring or a winter crop. Perennial oats is used as fodder; annual oats includes the cultivated oat plant (A. sativa). Although oats is used chiefly as livestock feed, some is processed for human consumption (oatmeal). Oats is a source of calcium, iron, vitamin B, and nicotinic acid, and in Ukraine they are a basic grain food. Owing to the use of more productive feed plants in recent decades (corn, peas, sugar beets), acreage planted with oats has gradually been diminishing in Ukraine.