Bright green, serrated leaves of Japanese mustard add welcome pizzazz to gourmet salads
Days To Maturity
2-4 weeks BLF
How to Sow
- For optimum flavor, grow in cool weather.
- Prepare the bed by turning the soil under to a depth of 8 inches. Level with a rake to remove clumps of grass and stones.
- Sow in average well-worked soil in full sun. Do not plant where members of the cabbage family were planted in the past two years. Plant in early spring and again in midsummer for a fall crop.
- In rows 24 inches apart, sow seeds evenly and cover with ½ inch fine soil. Firm lightly and water gently.
- Seedlings emerge in 10-21 days depending on soil and weather conditions.
- For continuous harvest, sow every 14 days until the weather becomes hot.
- Thin gradually to stand 12 inches apart starting when seedlings are about 1-2 inches high.
How to Grow
- Keep weeds under control during the growing season. Weeds compete with plants for water, space and nutrients, so control them by either cultivating often or use a mulch to prevent their seeds from germinating. Avoid disturbing the soil around the plants when weeding.
- Keep plants well watered during dry periods to promote rapid, uninterrupted growth. Plants need about 1 inch of rain per week during the growing season. Use a rain gauge to check to see if you need to add water. It’s best to water with a drip or trickle system that delivers water at low pressure at the soil level. If you water with overhead sprinklers, water early in the day so the foliage has time to dry off before evening, to minimize disease problems. Keep the soil moist but not saturated.
- Monitor for pests and diseases. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for pest controls recommended for your area.
Harvest and Preserving Tips
- Harvest young foliage when it reaches 6-8 inches long, about 45 days after sowing.
- Pick the lower leaves or harvest the entire plant at once before the foliage becomes too tough.
- For a fall harvest, pick after a light frost as the frost improves the flavor.
- Stop picking once plants flower as the leaves will become bitter-tasting. Flowers are also edible.
- Mustard is great for salads or as cooked greens. You can also boil or sauté the foliage.
- Refrigerate the harvest to preserve until used.
- You can also blanch and freeze the leaves. They may also be pickled.
Days To Maturity30-45 daysSunFull SunSpread12 inchesHeight14-16 inchesSow MethodDirect SowPlanting TimeFall, SpringSow Time2-4 weeks BLFThin12 inchesLife CycleAnnual
Mustard, Mizuna is rated out of 5 by 2.Rated 4 out of 5 by TheHappyGardener from "Wild Mustard" or "Hen-Pecked" Mustard Greens When I read the background info on these, I was surprised that these are Japanese in origin because as a child, growing up in the American deep south, the older people used to refer to these types of mustard greens as "Wild Mustard" or "Hen-Pecked" mustard greens. The reason being, the jagged shape of the leaves, as if the chickens had been loosed and allowed to peck at or eat them. Thought you can plant these in summer, they are better when planted in the late summer or early fall, when the days become cooler. As with all greens like: Collards, Kale, Turnips & their greens; Mustard greens are at their best when they are grown in the cooler parts of the year, and are kissed by the first frost of early winter. You can also have some good greens if you plant a spring crop in March, before it gets too hot. In cooler climates, these greens really come alive. They have that peppery & pungent arugula-like flavor that is associated with the more standard curly-leafed or Florida broad-leafed mustard greens that you find down south. Not that you can't grow greens during the summer months, they just won't taste the same as the cooler climate crops...that's all. I plant these in well drained soil containing organic compost that has been mixed with composted cow manure, sand, and bone and blood meal. I use a slow release 10-10-10 fertilizer, and I add a little Epsom salt and crushed egg shells to the soil as well. The Epsom salt and crushed egg shells benefit your garden soils in many ways (look it up, if you don't believe me!). Snails and slugs will avoid soils with Epsom salts mixed into them like the plague. And that is just one of the many benefits of it. **If rabbits and deer are a problem in your area, you might want to grow these in raised beds with chicken wire or similar fencing around them. Sometimes, you can find sprays that mimic the scent of coyote or fox urine, to spray in a radius around your garden beds. That will usually keep the rabbits at bay...at least until it rains and washes away. Sometimes a decoy bed, of say, Kale, can be planted (if you know the pesky critter's routes into your yard), down at an easily accessible level, where they will munch on those instead of on the greens that you don't want then to eat. Make sure you plant the decoy beds far away from your desired crops. The trick is supposed to be that the rabbits and / or deer will always go for something that is more accessible to them, than to risk human or pet contact, by venturing in too close to your house. I've tried the decoy bed before, and it worked really well for me that year. To keep bugs a certain worms from eating the leaves, I spray my beds with Sevin concentrate, which attaches to your garden hose every 3 weeks. No disrespect to those 100% Organic purists, but I tried all of that so-called organic & alternate stuff to keep the bugs and worms off of my veggies, but they are all IFY at best. Nothing beats a spritz of good ol' Sevin to annihilate them, and promote a holes-free crop of greens. Of course, when you harvest them, you'd wash them thoroughly anyway, before chopping them up and cooking them. As for cooking...these greens, I mix right in with my other mustard greens and turnip greens, (with a few of the turnip bulbs diced up into them). I usually brown off some smoked pork jowl or slab bacon, and then add in some diced onion and garlic. Sauté that for a few minutes, and then begin to add in your washed and chopped greens. Add just a little water, as the greens with release water as they break down. Add greens in batches...stir and cover, until all greens are into the pot. Mustard & Turnip greens will shrink down to a spinach-like consistency. Once all greens have been incorporated, add in two Knorr Chicken bouillon cubes, some S & P, a little sugar, some crushed red pepper flakes to taste, and just a little onion powder and garlic powder to accentuate the flavors of the real onions and garlic. And lastly, a few splashes of either apple cider or white balsamic vinegar to top it off. Simmer greens on medium or medium low until fork tender. *Vegetarians or Vegans: Ignore the meat components and the chicken bouillon, but do all the other steps, and use Knorr vegetable bouillon cubs instead. These are delicious! ~Enjoy!~Date published: 2015-03-18Rated 4 out of 5 by Riverbank from Beautiful but somewhat bland and fast to bolt Once these germinated after being planted in mid-April, they grew fast for us. Tiny, tiny seeds (it is mustard after all) from Holland with perhaps 10% germination rate max in our case. Taste is satisfactory, if blander and more 'grassy' than hoped. We use mizuna in Asian noodle and salad dishes, and it should work for shabu shabu; however, this variety could not substitute for rocket or water cress in Western salads in our opinion as it isn't peppery enough, sadly. Started bolting after 40 days and lots of rain. We snapped the stalks off (edible and nice) and are hoping we can pluck the leaves for a while longer.Date published: 2012-06-03