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Brassica juncea

Pronunciation: Brass-ih-kah jun-see-ah
Family: Brassicaceae/cruciferae (cabbage family)
Common Name: Mustard greens, leaf mustard, indian mustard, brown mustard
Plant Type:
  • fruits, vegetables
  • annual
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • -50 to -40ºF ZONE 2
  • -30 to -40ºF ZONE 3
  • -20 to -30ºF ZONE 4
  • -10 to -20ºF ZONE 5
  • 0 to -10ºF ZONE 6
  • 10 to 0ºF ZONE 7
Sun Exposure:
  • full sun
Bloom Description: As day length increases, mustard bolts up with a 3 ft (0. 9 m) stalk supporting bright yellow flowers that soon develop into sickle-shaped green seed pods.
Plant Perks:
  • Easy to Grow/Ideal for Children
Propagation: All of the mustard cultivars are grown from seed
Native to: Brassica juncea is a tetraploid - it has double the number of chromosomes normal for the genus. It apparently originated in asia by hybridization between b. Rapa (a variable species which includes turnip, chinese cabbage, pak choi, and broccoli raab) and b. Nigra (black mustard, the species generally grown for the seeds from which the yellow condiment is made). Leaf mustard has been cultivated in asia and europe for thousands of years. It probably was first domesticated in central asia and the himalayas. Some cultivars are grown in india, china and japan for the oil extracted from the seeds. Others are grown for the leaves, roots, stems or flowers. In much of europe, b. Juncea has replaced b. Nigra as the source of commercial mustard seed. Leaf mustard has escaped cultivation and become established as a weed in disturbed sites in north america.
Notes for Identification: Source: floridata - in europe and the united states, mustard greens are eaten raw in salads or cooked as a potherb, like spinach. Mustard greens are tangier than spinach, collards and kale, and have a sharp, peppery flavor that is enhanced with a sweet, mild vinegar. We usually mix milder collards and kale with sharper turnip greens and mustard and cook in a steamer over boiling water. I like them with a little butter and salt and pepper; many people like to spice them up with hot chile pepper vinegar, and traditional southern cooks boil mustard greens with salt pork, bacon or ham. Be sure to serve cornbread to mop up the "pot likker. "care:mustard greens are one of the easiest vegetables to grow. They can be planted a little before last frost in spring or after the hottest weather in autumn. In zones 8-11 mustard greens are grown in autumn and winter. In north florida, i plant mustard in september or october and sometimes a second crop in january. By april they have pretty much petered out and gone to seed. Mustard greens are big enough to pick 30 days after planting from seed. Remove individual outer leaves and you can continue harvesting from the same plants throughout the season. In cold weather mustard greens have almost no pests, but warmer weather will bring on the aphids and cabbage worms. Mustard greens grow so fast, though, you can usually harvest plenty before the bugs make them too unsightly to be appetizing. If you do have aphids (usually on the underside of the leaves), just wash them off under the cold water tap before cooking.
Seed photo: 1
Located in: Annual
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