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Mustard  Sinapis alba United States National Arboretum

White Mustard. (By: Cliff from Arlington, Virginia, USA Attribution 2.0 Generic

Season: Green: Spring & Summer. Seeds: Summer

Urban, Rural or Both: Both


White Mustard (Sinapis alba). I can't speak for other than Southern Ontario, but if most of the East is like here, you will never have a problem finding this plant. This plant has a long held reputation in Europe as being very healthy to eat.

Do not mistake this for the Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata) which I do not recommend for eating either the seeds or greens, though it is a traditional spice and green in Europe. See here for more on why. The seed pods look very similar in both the White and Garlic Mustard. Garlic Mustard has white flowers, and the leaves are smaller and more diamond shaped.

Greens

The greens picked when young in the spring make a nice addition to most anything you would use greens in. They go very well in stir fry's. They are both a green and spice, as the taste has some zing to it, but not too much. Some chopped up and added to soups is very good.

Seeds

The seeds from the White Mustard is one of the ingredients that the condiment Mustard is made of. The other ingredients are Black Mustard seed (Brassica nigra), turmeric and vinegar. You can use the seeds to make your own mustard, or just gather a few seeds, toast them and use in dishes.

This seed is great for gathering, and keeping in a breathable container and using when needed for cooking for a bit of zing to the taste. Just put a few in a hot (not ridiculously hot) pan, roll them around until lightly toasted, and add to stir fry's, soups, baked dishes, whatever you like. You don't have to toast them, but I think they do taste better toasted. You could also make your own mustard, but as one who has tried, and considering the cost of the pre-made mustard, I won't recommend it.


Growing this plant in your home garden:

For detailed growing instructions, go to my Wild Foods Home Garden website Mustard page.


Description:

White Mustard (Sinapis alba) range. Distribution map courtesy of U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA Natural Resources Service) and used in accordance with their policies.


Sinapis_alba_2

White Mustard plant. (By: Ariel Palmon Attribution 2.0 Generic)


Sinapis_alba_FlowerCloseup_2010-4-11_DehesaBoyalPuertollano

White Mustard flower close up. (By: Dehesa Boyal de Puertollano)


Sinapis_alba_fruits_IP0307031

White Mustard immature seed pods. (By: Leo Michels)


800px-Sinapis_alba_graines

White Mustard Seeds. (By: Pancrat a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/">CC BY-SA 3.0


White Mustard sketch

Drawing of the White Mustard plant. (USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. Vol. 2: 191.)


White Mustard color drawing

White Mustard color drawing. (By: Franz Eugen Köhler, Köhler's Medizinal-Pflanzen - public domain image.)


Black Mustard (Brassica nigra).

Do not mistake this for the Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata) which I do not recommend for eating either the seeds or greens, though it is a traditional spice and green in Europe. See here for more on why. The seed pods look very similar. Garlic Mustard has white flowers, and the leaves are smaller and more diamond shaped.

The greens picked when young in the spring make a spicy addition to most anything you would use greens in. They go very well in stir fry's and most other meals, but due to how strong they are, only use a little and only use the greens in the spring when they are young. Small amounts chopped up and added to a lasagne is very good. Small amounts in soups works very well as a spice.


Growing this plant in your home garden:

Scatter seeds where you want them in the spring and lightly rake. Make sure it is full sun and rich soil. They don't like really wet soil, and you will get more if you have manure in the soil or fertilize after the have come up about 15 cm (6 inches). They love nitrogen and respond well to it.

For detailed growing instructions, go to my Wild Foods Home Garden website Mustard page.


Description:

Black Mustard (Brassica nigra) range. Distribution map courtesy of U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA Natural Resources Service) and used in accordance with their policies.


Mustard Black

Young Black Mustard.

Black Mustard Plant

Typical Black Mustard in flower. (Jennifer Anderson, hosted by the USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database)


Brassica_nigra_feuilles.JPG

Black Mustard leaves. (By: Pancrat Attribution 2.0 Generic


Brassica_nigra_(4995050290)

Black Mustard flower close up. (By: Matt Lavin Attribution 2.0 Generic


Brassica_nigra_silique

Black Mustard immature seed pods. (By: Pancrat CC BY-SA 3.0


Black Mustard Seeds

Black Mustard Seeds.jpg


Black Mustard sketch

The Black Mustard plant. (USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. Vol. 2: 193)


Field mustard (Sinapis arvensis). Known also as Wild Mustard and Charlock. Though it can be used for the greens in the spring, I find I prefer the taste of the White Mustard greens, and I never have a problem finding them.

Field mustard (Sinapis arvensis) range. Distribution map courtesy of U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA Natural Resources Service) and used in accordance with their policies.





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Important Notes when Identifying
Rules & Cautions
Dangerous Plants to Avoid Touching
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