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Arugula Seeds

About Arugula

This wonderfully fast-growing cool-season leafy green will improve your everyday salads and sandwiches with its peppery flavor profile. Grown since early Greek and Roman times, arugula is now considered a specialty item as it is paired with feta, walnuts, tomatoes, prosciutto, and balsamic vinegar. Drop some arugula seeds in your garden or container during the cool seasons of early spring or early fall and enjoy the benefits of being able to harvest this peppery salad green at will.

When to Plant Arugula Seeds

Arugula seeds will germinate in pretty cold temperatures. Plant your arugula seeds in the early spring as soon as the soil can be worked. Cooler zones can plant again in early fall, while warmer zones can plant throughout the winter.

Where to Plant Arugula Seeds

Arugula does best in nutrient-rich soil in full sun. However, arugula can withstand most soil conditions and even some partial shade. Just make sure it is in a location that receives at least six hours of direct sun daily.

How to Plant Arugula Seeds

Arugula seeds require light to germinate, so be careful not to cover them when planting. Learn more about germination light requirements here.

Plant the seeds in your soil, cover them lightly with soil no more than a quarter-inch deep and water them down. Arugula seeds are small, and it is easy to over-sow. Resist the urge to just pour your seeds out; instead, take your time to intentionally plant each seed. Another idea is to mix your arugula seeds with other lettuce varieties and plant them together to create a leafy blend.

The seeds will germinate within about seven days. After the seedlings are around an inch tall, thin them out so there is three or four inches of space between each plant. Keep the soil consistently moist, but not water-logged. It is especially important to keep the soil moist during hot spells to prevent bolting. Arugula does best with a fair amount of sun, soil that is well-watered and high in nitrogen. If you have nitrogen-poor soil, fertilizer can help amend this.

For a continuous harvest, sow more seeds every two to three weeks.

How to Harvest Arugula

Arugula generally takes around 40 days to become fully mature to harvest.

Pinch off the outer leaves of the arugula to harvest. Just picking the outer leaves will allow the plant to stay intact and keep producing leaves to harvest. The more you harvest, the more the plant will yield. Keep in mind that home-grown arugula has more of a potent, peppery taste than store bought, and a little goes a long way to add flavor to salads and sandwiches!

Additionally, the flavor of arugula will get stronger as you harvest the leaves. You can harvest the leaves until the flavor gets too strong for your taste. If your arugula is melting, cover it with shade tents to provide some relief from the sun.