How to Grow Mustard

comments (9) January 23rd, 2009

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A field of mustard.
A black mustard plant.
A field of mustard.Click To Enlarge

A field of mustard.

Photo: Phillip Harvey

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Mustard is easy to grow
Mustard will grow well in most soils, but will produce the most seed in rich, well-drained, well-prepared soil with a pH of no less than 6.0. It will thrive if given constant moisture. It likes cool weather; a light frost can even improve the flavor. Black mustard is the least fussy.

Black mustard plant with seed pod and seeds
  The black mustard plant (Brassica nigra), shown with a mature seed pod (top right), white mustard seeds, and black mustard seeds.  
For best results, add 10 to 15 pounds of 5-10-10 fertilizer per 500 square feet, or the organic equivalent. Thoroughly work the amendments into the top 2 to 3 inches of soil just prior to seeding.

In the springtime, sow the seed in drills about 1⁄8 inch deep and 15 inches apart, as the last frost deadline nears. If you live in the South, you can also seed in September or October for harvest in the fall and winter. Once the plants are up, thin to 9 or 10 inches apart, and then you can almost ignore them. If you’re interested in harvesting a lot of seed, however, feed the plants regularly.

Mustard is blissfully free of insect and disease problems, and larger critters don’t seem to like it much either. The hotter and drier the weather, though, the faster the plants go to seed—30 to 60 days, depending on the variety and the climate.

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posted in: greens, mustard

Comments (9)

azhokie79 writes: I couldn't let the post by kiwibloke8 go without some clarification. The scriptural reference to the mustard seed means something entirely different. Jesus used this illustration to show simply that the Kingdom has small beginnings but will grow and produce great results.
Posted: 10:47 am on May 16th
kiwibloke8 writes: Regarding your note Biblical reference to the mustard seed becoming a tree. You are repeating a common misconception. Jesus in that verse was warning His followers the danger of the church (the kingdom of the heavens) of transmuting into a large tree that lodges evil "birds" instead of remaining as a small herb. For example an herb such as mustard cannot transmute into an oak tree that would violate its genetic code. Mustard is meant for food for humanity. In the same way the church is meant only to be small in size and good for "food" and not a huge religious organization that oppresses people.

I encourage you to change your note to reflect that Jesus desired the church to be like an herb good for feeding people and not a large tree for showiness and oppression. :-)
Posted: 10:42 am on September 7th
MarshallChauvet writes: very nice.
Posted: 12:25 am on November 4th
Rettaewart writes: I can use mustard oil for my recipes!!
Posted: 2:16 am on September 17th
mollyfross writes: nice
Posted: 3:50 am on September 7th
Ravesecer writes: I love this guide,yellow flowers on of my favourite
Posted: 3:15 am on September 3rd
Eddiennox writes: I have my own garden of mustard seeds!
Posted: 12:36 am on August 2nd
massivedynamic writes: I'm sure they can be grown there, they like very cool weather to do best as well as rich well drained soil. You can purchase seeds organic which is probably the best way to go off amazon. You could also buy them in your local grocery store but there isn't a guarantee that they haven't been tampered with.
Posted: 4:50 am on June 14th
Bartolomeo_D writes: Can Mustard seeds be planted in Washington State if so when and where can seeds be purchesed
Posted: 10:24 am on June 18th
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