The seeds will germinate quickly in cool soil and seedlings are capable of tolerating a light frost, but consider protecting plants with cloches or row covers nonetheless! .
How to Plant and Grow Arugula: Add "Rocket" Greens to Your Garden
Referred to by many names including rocket, rucola, roquette, rucoli, and rugula, arugula is an incredibly fast-growing cool season crop that adds a fresh spicy kick to salads and sandwiches.Though fluctuating in popularity over the centuries, arugula has been a part of the human diet for a very long time.The plant is native to the Mediterranean and has long been enjoyed around the region in Italy, Morocco, Turkey, and Portugal.In ancient times its leaves and seed oil were considered an aphrodisiac by the Egyptians and Romans, and is still used medicinally in India, Pakistan, and West Asia.Though originally brought to North America by British colonists, it really wasn’t until the last 20 years or so that it has gone from a relatively rare ingredient to modern culinary sensation.Arugula prefers nutrient rich soil but is tolerant of a wide variety of growing conditions.Don’t forget to thin plants as they are growing to avoid overcrowding and reduce risk of disease.Because it has shallow roots and doesn’t take up much space, it can be seeded around many slower growing crops to fill in the gaps.This can also be handy in the heat of summer, because larger crops will provide some shady relief to this cool weather lover.Wild arugula, a close relative of the cultivated variety, is less bitter and more heat tolerant.It does grow a bit slower, maturing in about 5 weeks, so keep that in mind if timing seedings for a continual harvest.These common garden pests can overwinter in soil and emerge to chew holes in young leaves, sometimes causing total destruction of plants.There are a few ways to control flea beetle populations, such as using floating row covers, companion planting with marigolds, or by sprinkling naturally occurring diatomaceous earth.These little green caterpillars chew their way through leaves, growing larger and more damaging the longer they feed.Fungi and bacterium love veggies and these two arre fairly prevalent in attacking leafy greens:.Yellowing leaves or small wet brown spots on foliage can be a sign of this bacterial infection.Store leaves wrapped in cloth or paper towel in a perforated plastic bag, and place in the crisper drawer.Plant Type: Self seeding annual Tolerance: Various soil types Native to: Mediterranean, naturalized worldwide Growth Rate: Fastest in cool weather Hardiness (USDA Zone): 3-11 Maintenance: Low Season: Spring and fall Soil Type: All Exposure: Full sun to part shade Soil pH: 6.0-7.0 Time to Maturity: 40 days Soil Drainage: Well-draining Spacing: 3-4 inches Companion Planting: Bush beans, carrots, onions, potatoes, spinach, other salad greens Planting Depth: 1/4 inch Avoid Planting With: Other plants in the Brassicaceae family to avoid sharing pests and diseases Height: 6-12 inches Family: Brassicaceae Spread: 12-18 inches Genus: Eruca Water Needs: Keep soil consistently moist Species: vesicaria Common Pests: Flea beetles, cabbage loopers, root nematodes, slugs, birds Common Disease: Downy mildew, leaf blight.Arugula is a perfect addition to any dish that could benefit from added freshness and a hint of spiciness.Wonderful in salads and sandwiches, these flavorful greens are also amazing in stir fries, soups, and egg dishes such as quiche.The chocolate balsamic dressing finishes it off creating a light salad that is the perfect combo of fruity, sweet, and savory flavors.Chanterelle mushrooms and potatoes provide some heft and the arugula pesto added on top brings in a spicy, fresh flavoring.Vegans and carnivores will both love this tasty dish during the cooler months of fall and early spring.If you are anything like me, just scrolling down this page will make your mouth water for a big zesty bowl of fresh rocket. .
How to Grow Arugula
Common Name Arugula, rocket, garden rocket Botanical Name Eruca versicaria Family Brassicaceae Plant Type Annual, vegetable Size 2–3 ft. tall, 1–1.5 ft.
wide Sun Exposure Full sun Soil Type Loamy, moist, well-drained Soil pH Acidic, neutral (6 to 7) Bloom Time Seasonal Hardiness Zones 2–11 (USDA) Native Area Mediterranean.For a continual harvest, sow more seeds every two to three weeks until the weather heats up in the summer or frost hits in the fall.Arugula grows best in full sun, meaning at least six hours of direct sunlight on most days.This will help to prevent the plants from wilting and bolting (flowering and going to seed), extending your harvest for as long as possible.Like many vegetables, arugula needs regular watering for healthy growth and optimal flavor.If you fail to water regularly, you'll likely cause the plants to bolt and ruin the flavor of the leaves.You can extend arugula's growing season somewhat by protecting it from cold with row covers and from heat with shading.This wild variety has flat, narrow leaves with spicy yet not overpowering flavor.This wild variety has flat, narrow leaves with spicy yet not overpowering flavor.Arugula and spinach are commonly combined in salads, and interestingly they’re often substituted for one another in recipes even though they have quite different flavors and textures.Your arugula should be fully grown and ready to harvest in about four to seven weeks, depending on the variety.Alternatively, you can cut off all the leaves just above the soil; the plant might regrow if the weather is still mild.If you wait too long to harvest and the plant bolts, eat the flowers but not the leaves.The blooms appear after the leaves have grown to full size and are too bitter to eat.Also, as the weather warms, containers make it easy to move the plants out of direct sun in the heat of the day, thereby extending the growing season.Unglazed clay is a good material to allow excess soil moisture to evaporate through its walls.But if you notice any broken or diseased leaves, remove them as soon as possible to help prevent problems from spreading.Allow your arugula plants to flower, and wait for the seed heads to turn brown and become brittle.The seeds can germinate even when the soil temperature is as low as 40 degrees Fahrenheit.Moreover, the short, early growing season of arugula means you'll miss most pest infestations in the spring but perhaps not if you plant again in late summer.Arugula plants are favored by slugs as well as cabbage loopers, flea beetles, aphids, and diamondback moths.Stop slugs from reaching the tender leaves with beer traps, diatomaceous earth, or another traditional method.Arugula is an easy plant to grow and care for, as long as it receives mild temperatures, sufficient sunlight, and consistent moisture.It takes between four and seven weeks on average for arugula seeds to grow and be ready to harvest.Arugula is an annual plant, meaning it completes its life cycle in one season. .
Arugula grows well in the spring and fall but tends to bolt in hot weather.Arugula is traditionally direct-sown in the spring after the danger of hard frost has passed or in cooler fall months once soil temperatures start to decline.Plant arugula early in the spring or later in the summer for a fall harvest.When growing for seed, arugula should be sown so that plants have enough time to produce a healthy canopy of leaves before high temperatures trigger flowering.Arugula is commonly eaten as a fresh salad green or as a peppery addition to sandwiches, pizza, and pasta dishes.If you want to preserve these spicy greens, try your hand at making arugula pesto or salsa verde.The seed heads of arugula will turn light brown and become brittle at maturity.When most seed heads have matured, seed stalks can be cut and piled onto row cover or landscape fabric in a location protected from rain to finish maturing and drying.When stored in cool, dry conditions, arugula seeds can be expected to remain viable for six years. .
Native to the Mediterranean, arugula is a common salad vegetable in many parts of southern Europe and has grown in popularity around the world for its peppery, nutty taste and its nutritional content.In relatively cool weather, the young leaves have a mild flavour and can be continually harvested in spring or early fall. .
How to Grow Arugula
Sow arugula seed in the garden as early as 2 to 3 weeks before the average date of the last frost in spring.Sow succession arugula crops every 2 to 3 weeks for a continuous harvest.If summers do not get very warm, continue planting until about a month before the average first frost date.Grow arugula in full sun; it will tolerate partial shade.Plant arugula in soil rich in aged compost.Add aged garden compost to planting beds before growing.Cool temperatures produce the sweetest tasting arugula.For best flavor and to avoid bolting, plant arugula so that it comes to harvest in cool weather.Arugula requires about 40 days to come to harvest depending upon the variety.You can also broadcast arugula seed with other greens and harvest leaves when small.Arugula is a good choice for intercropping with larger crops.Pick young, tender leaves when they are when they are 2 to 5 inches (5-7.5 cm) long.‘Astro’ and ‘Runway’ are early arugula varieties and very good growers. .
How to Plant Arugula
Diatomaceous earth scattered over the leaves will kill all soft-bodied insects (beneficial as well as harmful); if you decide to use it be sure to the product is labeled “food safe” if you have small children or pets.A less toxic alternative is to cover the rows with Reemay, a fabric that keeps out insects but allows light and water to pass through.Do this toward the end of the season, when the plant elongates and flowers begin to form (bolting).Danielle likes to harvest a big batch of arugula when its flavor is at its peak but has trouble keeping it from spoiling in the fridge after washing. .
Arugula Grow Guide
Sow directly in the soil in early spring, or start indoors and set out seedlings.Arugula also makes a fine fall crop, and plants often survive winter with a protective mulch.Our Garden Planner can produce a personalized calendar of when to sow, plant and harvest for your area.An easy salad crop that doubles as a cooked green.Troubleshooting Flea beetles sometimes make small holes in leaves. .
This member of the mustard family is truly a rocket: it germinates quickly — even in cold, wet soil — and grows rapidly.To begin appreciating arugula's distinctive flavor, start by adding little pieces of leaves to regular salads.Once summer arrives, arugula leaves quickly turn bitter and the plant shifts into flower production.To maintain a continuous supply of young, tender leaves, sow a pinch of seeds somewhere in the garden every two or three weeks throughout the growing season.In late summer, sowing arugula under shade cloth will let you get plants established for a fall harvest. .