Rocket (Arugula)

Find a different vegetable Rocket (Arugula)

Rocket, also known as arugula or Eruca vesicaria, is a leafy green vegetable belonging to the Brassicaceae family. Native to the Mediterranean region, rocket has a long history dating back to Roman times and was highly valued for its nutritional and medicinal properties. Rocket has a peppery, slightly bitter taste that adds a punch to salads and other dishes.

During the Roman era, rocket was considered an aphrodisiac and was often used in various love potions and recipes. Pliny the Elder, a Roman naturalist, believed that rocket could act as a remedy against scorpion stings. Throughout the centuries, rocket has remained a popular vegetable in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Rocket is a nutrient-dense vegetable, packed with vitamins A, C, and K, as well as calcium, potassium, and folate. It also contains phytochemicals such as glucosinolates, which are thought to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, potentially helping to prevent chronic diseases.

As a versatile vegetable, rocket can be enjoyed raw or cooked. It pairs well with citrus flavors, such as lemon, as well as other salad greens like spinach and lettuce. It is commonly found in Italian cuisine, where it is often used in pasta dishes, risottos, and as a pizza topping. Try adding rocket to sandwiches, wraps, or even as a base for homemade pesto.

Growing Rocket (Arugula)

This is advice is most applicable to growers in the UK, you may need to adjust the timings if you live somewhere with a different climate and/or seasons.

Month Tasks Advice
January - -
February Sow seeds indoors, Start sowing rocket seeds in trays or pots indoors to get an early crop.
March Sow seeds outdoors, Sow rocket seeds directly in well-drained soil with a fine tilth in a sunny position.
April Sow seeds outdoors, Thin seedlings, Continue sowing rocket seeds outdoors and begin thinning seedlings to give them room to grow.
May Harvest leaves, Start harvesting rocket leaves when they are about 10-15 cm tall, picking outer leaves first.
June Harvest leaves, Continue harvesting rocket leaves regularly to encourage new growth and prevent bolting.
July Harvest leaves, Keep harvesting rocket leaves throughout the summer, watering during dry spells to maintain growth.
August Sow seeds outdoors, Harvest leaves, Sow rocket seeds outdoors for a late summer crop, and continue harvesting leaves as needed.
September Harvest leaves, Keep harvesting rocket leaves as the cooler weather encourages new growth.
October Harvest leaves, Continue harvesting rocket leaves until colder weather slows growth.
November - -
December - -

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