The Cat and the dog Zhuchka have got into the habit of insulting the little Mouse. They have teased her and teased her and even fought, resulting in both the Cat and the Mouse having had enough of Zhuchka. Now Zhuchka feels sorry for having hurt the Cat and the Mouse and for not saying "sorry". The dog begins to beg forgiveness from everyone – from the Little Lime-Tree, the Little Aspen-Tree, the Little Birch-Tree and the Granddaughter. But the Granddaughter does not forgive him, unable to forget that he barks and bites all the time.
The Granddaughter plans to go for a walk. But the Grandmother won't let her out until the girl cleans the house and helps her in the kitchen-garden. The Grandmother is annoyed at the Granddaughter and the latter runs away. The Grandfather tries to stand up for her, but the Grandmother drives him away too.
Everyone is annoyed: the Mouse at the Cat, the Cat at Zhuchka, Zhuchka at the Granddaughter, the Granddaughter at the Grandmother and the Grandmother at the Grandfather. The downcast Grandfather goes into the dark forest, digs the ground and plants the Turnip. The Turnip grows and grows to an immense size. The Grandfather tries to pull it out of the ground: he yanks and tugs, but cannot pull it out. The Grandmother comes to him and asks for old resentments to be forgotten; she gives him a pastry and offers her help. But the Turnip won't give up. Then they call for the Granddaughter to help. She apologises for not helping the Grandmother and promises to listen to her from now on and respect her elders. All three try to pull out the Turnip, but still to no avail. They call on Zhuchka. The Granddaughter makes peace with Zhuchka and together they help the old couple to pull on the Turnip. Then the Cat comes to help. She and Zhuchka promise never to quarrel again and to look after each other. But the Cat's help is still not enough.
The Mouse comes running up to them. The Cat apologises to her for teasing her. The Mouse behind the Cat, the Cat behind Zhuchka, Zhuchka behind the Granddaughter, the Granddaughter behind the Grandmother and the Grandmother behind the Grandfather all pull and pull at the Turnip and succeed in pulling it out. It turns out that the Turnip has magic powers that help everyone make peace. Thus the Turnip teaches the heroes of the tale to value and respect those they love.