Pak choi could be set to gain recognition from the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) after the organisation added it to its trials menu.
The Chinese salad leaf vegetable has become ever more popular in the UK since the introduction of the new F1 hybrids, with Thompson & Morgan revealing that there has been a sustained increase in sales.
It is also a favourite ingredient of many high-profile chefs in Britain and the RHS is keen to study its growth capabilities.
It will look at the vegetable for between one and three years and will only grant it an Award of Garden Merit if it is deemed to have achieved "outstanding excellence for ordinary garden use".
A total of 27 cultivars of the plant, which belongs to the Brassica rapa Chinesis group, will be studied by a committee of more than 170 garden and greenhouse experts.
Other plants currently or about to go on trial include daffodils, carrot, spring cabbage, asparagus and hardy Chrysanthemum.
In other news, the RHS has reported that Nottingham Trent University is to begin growing a range of heritage vegetable varieties after becoming a seed guardian on Garden Organics Heritage Seed Library programme.