Grazia | Shoulder Season Wild Rocket Seed
$5.79 – $51.20 AUD excl gst
A variety for shoulder season production with very dark green colour, high uniformity, compact and upright growth.
The very uniform, long, fine serrated leaves have a good strength and superior shelf-life. Grazia is slower bolting than most Selvatica varieties and has intermediate resistance to Downy mildew. Avg 100,000 seeds/30g
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Diplotaxis tenuifolia.
CULTURE: Arugula prefers a fertile, well-drained soil, with a pH range of 6.0-6.8 in full sun to part shade. Arugula prefers cool conditions and is hardy enough to over-winter in many locations from late summer and early autumn sowings. It is also well-adapted for growing in cool greenhouses and high tunnels for winter production. Direct seed 3mm deep from early spring onward @ 30-50 seeds/30cm Germination should take 5-7 days. Keep soil moist to slow bolting. For a continual supply, plant every 2-3 weeks until 1 month prior to first avg. frost date.
The Following is an excerpt from The Market Gardener’s Masterclass (JM Fortier). it is not complete and has slightly been edited for an Australian context.
- 12 rows 6cm apart spaced every 4cm on the row
- 6-row seeder (C-O-T); Hole Size C, Outboard pulleys, Tight brush setting
- Arugula will do great in beds that were previously amended with compost and his fertilized with a mix of alfalfa meal (2-0-2) meal and pelleted chicken manure (5-3-2).
- When planning for more than 2 cuts on the same crop, adding a layer of compost (+/-2.5cm & absolutely weed free) to your beds and seeding directly into it will help keep the crop strong and weed free.
- Drip tapes or Techline: 4 per bed.
- Sprinkler may throw dirt on foliage.
- Root depth: Shallow 15-60cm
- General: Frequent shallow watering to maintain flavour, succulence and support rapid growth. Critical to water throughout during hot days.
For a continuous supply of really nice arugula, we seed every week with an estimated 30% more than our weekly sales target. When needed, we will make a second cut on a bed, but the first one is always better. In our program, arugula is seeded alongside turnips, radishes, and other baby Asian greens, all crops that will stay in the field for less than 45 days and that belong to the brassicaceae family. They therefore have the same fertilization and plant protection requirements.
- Rotary harrow
- 6-row seeder, scale, notepad and your seeds
- 75cm bed prep rake
- Anti-insect netting (or row cover in the spring)
- Flex Tine Weeder
- Remove silage tarp and clean large debris. Use the rake if needed*
- Uniformly apply amendments and pass with the rotary harrow at a depth of 3cm. Rake the bed carefully, removing all debris; soil clods, rocks, roots, etc. Beds need to be perfectly clean, levelled and firm for optimal usage of the 6-row seeder
- Only seed when the bed surface is dry (if not, seeds will stick, and the seeder won’t work properly). It’s good practice to roll over the seed bed with the 6-row (without any seeds) in order to firm the seed bed and to make sure that it won’t clog
- Before seeding, take time to carefully adjust the 6-row seeder. To minimize uncertainty, we don’t play around with the whole size, nor do we adjust the depth of the planting. The brush, however, should be adjusted every time you seed
- The gap under the brush (T-tight, N-normal, L-loose) should always be less than half the size of the seed being sown. For arugula, we set it to T. To adjust the brush, turn it clockwise to open it more or counterclockwise to close it
- To make sure that all six hoppers are feeding at the same rate, fill all of them with the exact same number of seeds. After seeding halfway in your first pass, adjust the brushes until all six are feeding at the same rate
- Cover with anti-insect netting, install irrigation and water the soil until it is deeply moistened
* If the previous crop is too well established, or if the bed is too messy, mow the crop as low as possible and harrow at a depth of 5cm. Add 2.5cm of compost evenly spread on the whole width of the bed and transplant into compost following a no-till strategy
- Unlike radishes and turnips that are seeded as the same time, arugula cannot tolerate any weed pressure. Because we harvest quickly and efficiently using the greens harvester, there is no time to be picking through the crop for weeds
- Tarping seed beds with black plastic for 2 weeks prior to seeding date is a good first start in diminishing weed pressure in your arugula. Using the stale seed bed technique (forcing the weeds to pop up before you plant) is another good practice. If weeds continue to be a problem, planting arugula directly onto weed-free compost is another good option
- In any case, cultivate using the flex tine weeder +/- 10 days after direct seeding the crop, and again 5 days later. Make at least 2 passes each time
- To protect the crop against flea beetles, cover the bed with anti-insect netting (or row cover) immediately after seeding
- This practice is even more effective if the bed is irrigated before installing the net, as the water will chase away the flea beetles. The more tightly the sides are sealed, the better the results will be
- The arugula is harvested when the leaves measure between 8 and 13cm long
- Use the quick-cut greens harvester with a new or very sharp blade
- When using the tool, make sure that the blade doesn’t touch the ground and ALWAYS pay attention not to have stems longer than 5cm.
- With a well-sharpened blade and a clean bed, one person should harvest at least 50kg/per hour
- After the harvesting is done, pass over the cut area using a rake to remove the debris. Performing this operation ensures a second clean cut
HARVEST: For bunching, cut just above soil level. For baby leaf, clip leaves for cut-and-come-again. After plants flower, the leaves can still be used but taste is sharper. Flowers are also edible
PEST CONTROL: Flea beetles can be controlled by covering the crop with floating row covers from the day of sowing. Prevent diseases with crop rotation and sanitation
AVG. DIRECT SEEDING RATE: For Salad types: 120m/30g, 1.6kg/acre in rows 45cm apart. For Wild types: 650m/30g, 450g/acre in rows 45cm apart