Growing Guide
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Vegetable (Cool Season) - Salad Greens

Also known as Roquette, Rocket
Eruca vesicaria
Brassicaceae Family

This fast-growing cool-season salad green - often ready to harvest as early as 4 weeks after seeding - adds a tangy, peppery or mustard-like flavor to salads and mesclun mixes.

Site Characteristics
  • full sun
  • part shade

Soil conditions:

  • tolerates low fertility
Prefers rich humusy soil with pH of 6 to 6.8, but will tolerate wide variety of conditions. Evenly moist soil will help slow bolting.

Special locations:

  • outdoor containers
Plant Traits

Lifecycle: annual

Ease-of-care: easy

Height: 1 to 2 feet

Growth is low and compact until heat causes plant to bolt.

Spread: 0.5 to 1 feet

Bloom time:

  • late spring
  • early summer
  • mid-summer
  • late summer

Flower color: white

Foliage color: medium green

Foliage texture: medium


  • cushion, mound or clump
  • upright

Forms a rosette of deeply lobed leaves. Plants become erect when heat induces bolting.

Shape in flower: flower stalks with sprays of flowers

Flowers are edible.

Special Considerations
  • frost
Special characteristics:
  • not native to North America
Special uses:
  • edible flowers
Growing Information
How to plant:

Propagate by seed

Germination temperature: 40 F to 55 F

Days to emergence: 5 to 7

Seed can be saved 5 years.

Maintenance and care:
Seeds germinate quickly even in cold soil. Plant as soon as soil can be worked in spring.

Avoid planting after other cabbage family crops.

Plant inch deep and 1 inch apart in rows, or broadcast alone or mixed with other greens. Gradually thin to 6-inch spacings using thinnings for salads.

Make new plantings every 2 to 3 weeks for a continuous supply until about a month before your average first frost date.

Slow bolting by reducing heat and moisture stress. Provide some shade for warm-season plantings.

Fast-growing plants are good for intercropping and relay cropping.

Often self-seeds. Is self-sterile and requires insects for pollination. Will not cross with other members of the mustard family.

Flea beetles

Rarely a problem.
Browse arugula varieties at our Vegetable Varieties for Gardeners website.

‘Sylvetta’ is actually a different species, Diplotaxis tenuifolia. It is slower growing, half as tall, and slower to bolt, and has smaller, more deeply lobed leaves, yellow flowers and more pungent taste.