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Rocket arugula (Diplotaxis tenuifolia)

Rocket arugula - Vegetable

Directions for growing

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Space plants: 15 - 20 cm apart
  • Harvest in 21-35 days.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Lettuce

Most vegetables and herbs do best in areas with full sun (6 or more hours/day). However, you can get away with a little shade with a lot of crops if you concede that their growth may be less vigorous. Leafy vegetables such as lettuce and spinach do the best in areas with some shade, preferring at least 6 hours/day of sun. All others listed will do okay in areas with less than a full day of sun, but need to get as close to 6 hours as possible for best results.Wild perennial arugula has a slightly stronger, more complex flavor and is slower growing than other arugula. Its peppery flavor adds a zing to salads but it is also delicious on pizza or as a pesto. Harvest as baby greens or grow to full size. A good container variety, and the flowers are edible, too! Days to Maturity: 30–50 days, grows 24 to 48cm at full maturity. Dark green deeply lobed leaves with four to ten small lateral lobes and a large terminal lobe. Shaped much like an elongated oak leaf, with a distinct red midrib and veins. Flavor can be described as rich and peppery. Edible flowers are yellow.For the mildest, best-tasting baby greens, pick leaves when 4-8cm long. Pick individually or cut off the plant at ground level. For the best flavor, harvest before plant begins to flower, unless you plan to eat the flowers.

Health and medicinal benefits

Along with other leafy greens, arugula contains high levels of beneficial nitrates and polyphenols. It’s low in Saturated Fat, and very low in Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Protein, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Pantothenic Acid, Zinc and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Folate, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Manganese.

A cup of arugula weighing about 20 grams (g) contains approximately 5 calories.

  • 0.516 g of protein
  • 0.132 g of fat

According to an adult’s daily nutritional goals, a cup of arugula will provide:

  • 27.7% of vitamin K
  • 3.2% of calcium
  • 2.5% of vitamin C

Arugula also contains some iron, folatemagnesiumpotassium, and provitamin A.While an overall healthful, vegetable-rich diet reduces a person’s cancer risk, studies have shown that certain groups of vegetables can have specific anticancer benefits.A 2017 meta-analysis linked eating more cruciferous vegetables with reduced total cancer risk, along with a reduction in all-cause mortality. Cruciferous vegetables are a source of glucosinolates, which are sulfur-containing substances. Glucosinolates may be responsible for the plants’ bitter taste and their cancer-fighting power. The body breaks down glucosinolates into a range of beneficial compounds, including sulforaphane.Researchers have found that sulforaphane can inhibit the enzyme histone deacetylase (HDAC), which is involved in the progression of cancer cells. The ability to stop HDAC enzymes could make foods that contain sulforaphane a potentially significant part of cancer treatment in the future. Reports have linked diets high in cruciferous vegetables with a reduced risk of breast cancercolorectal cancerlung cancerprostate cancer, and more. However, the research is limited, and scientists need more high-quality evidence before confirming these benefits.Easily recognized cruciferous vegetables include broccolicauliflowerkalecabbageBrussels sprouts, and turnips. Less well known types include arugula, bok choy, and watercress.

Osteoporosis prevention

Arugula is high in several key nutrients for bone health, including calcium and vitamin K.The Office of Dietary Statistics state that vitamin K is involved in bone metabolism and that a deficiency can increase the risk of bone fracture. Leafy green vegetables are one of the primary dietary sources of vitamin K.One cup of arugula provides 21.8 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin K, which goes towards the adult Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) daily value (DV) recommendation of 80 mcg for adults.Adequate vitamin K consumption improves bone health by playing an essential role in bone mineralization and helps to improve how the body absorbs and excretes calcium, which is another crucial nutrient for bone health.Arugula also contributes to a person’s daily need for calcium, providing 32 milligrams(mg) per cup, going towards the DV of 1,000 mg for adults.


Several review studies have found that eating vegetables reduces a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes. A review study from 2016 reports that leafy green vegetables are especially beneficial.One test tube study showed that arugula extract had anti-diabetic effects in mouse skeletal muscle cells. They produced this effect by stimulating glucose uptake in the cells.Plus, arugula and other cruciferous vegetables are a good source of fiber, which helps to regulate blood glucose and may reduce insulin resistance. High fibre foods make people feel fuller for longer, meaning they can help tackle overeating.

Heart health

Vegetable intake, specifically cruciferous vegetables, has protective effects on the heart.A 2017 meta-analysis reports that diets rich in cruciferous vegetables, salads, and green leafy vegetables have links with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.In addition, a 2018 study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association reported that consuming a diet high in cruciferous vegetables could reduce atherosclerosis in older women. Atherosclerosis is a common condition where plaque builds up in the arteries, increasing a person’s risk of cardiovascular problems.The heart protective effects of these vegetables may be due to their high concentration of beneficial plant compounds, including polyphenols and organosulfur compounds.

If you are going to use Arugula to treat an existing health condition please consult with your healthcare provider first.