Mustard is a vegetable cultivated both for its leaves and for its seeds used for various purposes, such as the preparation of the sauce that bears the name of the plant. Playtech News explains why you should plant mustard in the garden, and reveals that its benefits go beyond culinary uses. Here’s how mustard plants can actually help.
Why plant mustard in the garden
Although mustard is not very common in traditional gardens, it is part of the same family as other well-known vegetables, including broccoli and cabbage. Mustard greens can be used in salads, and its seeds are used to prepare the sauce of the same name.
Mustard is very versatile and can be used in a lot of ways. You can, for example, harvest its leaves and use them as an ingredient in various salads. If you let the plant develop seeds, you can harvest them and use them later to make your own mustard or as a spice in pickles that gives flavor and prevents softening of the vegetables.
To harvest the seeds, you must wait until the pods of the plant turn brown. Mustard seeds are found inside these pods. You can rub the husks between your palms over a large bowl to quickly and efficiently harvest the seeds. Don’t forget, however, to separate the seeds from the chaff afterwards.
The less known benefits of the mustard plant
What very few gardeners know is that planting mustard in the garden has many important benefits. One of them is natural pest control. Mustard releases compounds that repel certain pests such as aphids and nematodes. If you have mustard plants in your garden, you won’t need to use many chemical pesticides.
Mustard can improve the condition of the soil in your garden. Because it has deep roots, it can help to “break up” stiff soil. If you cut the plant and let it decompose, you will provide the soil with important organic matter.
If the benefits presented above tempt you, you should know that mustard is not at all difficult to grow in the garden. However, it does not compete well with weeds, especially when the plant is small. Be sure to sow the mustard in an area that receives full sun and water the young plants constantly, but not excessively. In just 30 days, you will have flawless plants.