The facts and benefits of the mustard

Mustard life cycle

The English name of mustard is originally derived from a contraction of the Latin words “mustum ardens” with the meaning “burning must”. The scientific name of mustard plant is Brassica juncea. There are many subspecies, varieties, cultivars, and strains of this species including canola and mustard greens or leaf mustard. There are many benefits of mustard, as the whole plant is edible. It was reported that Pythagoras, a Greek mathematician, in about 500 B.C. he wrote about mustard’s medicinal properties as remedy for scorpion stings.

Actually canola seeds or rapeseed can be used for animal feed and vegetable oil with low amount of saturated fat and high content of polyunsaturated fats, also known as canola oil. Mustard greens can produce brown Indian mustard seeds as herbs in many regional and international foods. Many mustard greens are used in international cooking specially in African and Asian cuisines. In Europe and North America, mustard is condiment made from the seeds of mustard plant such as American yellow mustard, Dijon mustard, and Honey mustard. Mustard seed is for human consumption because it has a good taste and rich in vitamins, minerals, also with low amount of saturated fat.

According to the United Nations (UN) Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) 2015, Canada is the top-ten number one of the mustard seeds producer with the production of 154,500 tons. Concerning the canola seeds, based on the data from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Services 2014, Canada is the top-ten number 2 of the canola seeds producer with the production of 17,960,000 tons after the number one producer, the European Union with the production of 21,102,000 tons.

The parable of mustard seed has a religious significance of the wise example for the people in four largest religions such as in Hinduism, Buddhism, Christian, Islam, and other beliefs such as Taoism. Basically, although mustard seed is small it’s important of having faith as small as mustard seed. On the other hand, someone who has in his heart as much envy as a grain of mustard seed will not enter paradise. The human nature is nothing or too small like mustard seed in space, time and matter in the multi universe.

Mustard greens are relatively easy to breed and adapt with the new environment in cool or warm climate. One of the exotic and luxury salad greens that can be found in healthy fine dinner is from the mustard greens Brassica juncea variety Japonica, cultivar Mizuna, strain Ruby Streaks. Ruby Streaks mustard greens leaves are finely serrated at a young size and have Mizuna-shaped or serrated leaves at full size. Ruby Streaks leaves colour is different from Mizuna leaves, because it is not light green but dark green to purple with maroon or burgundy veins. It’s a colourful elegance for a salad plate with a sweet and slightly pungent flavour. The flower is also edible with life colour yellow.

The mustard seeds are about 1 millimeter in diameter inside the fruits pod with about 10 seeds per pod and about 2,000 seeds per plant. The germination of Ruby Streaks mustard takes about 7 – 12 days from the seed. The most amazing thing of the seedling is the first appearance of new plant with a pair of heart leaves from cotyledon leaves with purple greenish colour. The planting season is late spring or late summer to early fall. Start harvesting the baby mustard greens at 20 days. The maturity of the plant approximately is about 25 – 45 days. Some of the mustard plants can survive during the mild winter and will produce the second times flowers in spring. Small mustard seed will grow to be the tallest vegetable in the garden that can reach up to 2 meters height.

The photos above (clockwise) are the Ruby Streaks mustard seeds with the brown colour, followed by the germination of the seed with a pair of purple greenish heart shaped cotyledon leaves, awesome young plants with deeply serrated purple and green leaves, and then after flowering plants with many seeds inside the pods.

Please visit our website at to learn more about the seedlings of Ruby Streaks plants and to optimize their germination and growth rates using the high quality of worm castings or vermicompost available in your location. Contact us if you need the organic non-GMO Ruby Streaks seeds and potting plants.

– Bintoro Gunadi

BRW card back


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