Buckwheat is the common name of two species of shrub (Fagopyrum esculentum and Fagopyrum tataricum) whose seeds are used as a cereal. It is not closely related to wheat or any of the other cereal grasses.
Buckwheat is a staple grain crop in eastern Europe. It is also grown in western Europe and North America, primarily for livestock feed, but also for human consumption. It grows best on arid land, in cool climates.
When the seeds are parboiled, dried, and coarsely ground, the resulting material is known as buckwheat groats or kasha. The seeds can also be made into flour, which is used for pancakes and in Asian and Russian cuisine.