Arugula Facts

Arugula Facts
Arugula, also known as rucola or garden rocket is herbaceous plant that belongs to the mustard family. It originates from Mediterranean region, but it can be found all over the world today. Arugula prefers areas with temperate or cool climate, and requires fertile, well-drained soil and plenty of sun for the successful growth. It tolerates drought and it can be frequently seen in dry areas. Thanks to the high content of vitamins and minerals, arugula is part of human diet around the world.
Interesting Arugula Facts:
Arugula has small, pale green stem that can reach 8 to 40 inches in height.
Arugula has pinnately lobed leaves with large terminal lobe and 4 to 10 lobes on the lateral sides. Young leaves resemble the leaves of spinach.
Arugula produces creamy-white flowers with purple veins arranged in multi-branched clusters (corymbs). Flowers contain both types of reproductive organs (perfect flowers).
Arugula blooms during the spring and summer. Flowers attract insects which are responsible for the pollination of this plant.
Fruit of arugula is capsule (known scientifically as siliqua) filled with seed.
Name "garden rocket" refers to the fact that arugula grows extremely fast (rocket speed). Leaves are ready for the harvest 40 days after sowing of seed.
Arugula is frequently cultivated near the basil and parsley in the gardens because it repels pest with its spicy smell and taste.
Arugula is good source of vitamins A, C, K and vitamins of the B group (especially B9) and minerals such as potassium, phosphorus and magnesium.
Young leaves of arugula have mild, sweetish taste, while older leaves have peppery, slightly nutty flavor. Arugula represents inevitable part of the Italian cuisine. It is mostly consumed as leafy vegetable, in the form of salad, topping for pizza and pasta, or as an ingredient of bread and dishes made of rice, meat and fish. In South America, arugula is often consumed with sun-dried tomato and mozzarella.
Arugula is used for the manufacture of sweet alcoholic beverage called Rucolino in the Gulf of Naples. Small quantities of this liqueur are traditionally consumed after the meal.
Flowers, seed pods and seed of arugula are also edible.
Oil obtained from the seeds of arugula, called Taramira oil, is used for cooking and preparation of salads. This oil can be also used in medical and cosmetic purposes.
Arugula can increase libido and improve health of cardiovascular and gastrointestinal systems (by increasing motility of bowel). It can also reduce inflammation, facilitate removal of the toxins, heavy metals and pesticides from the body, relieve symptoms of gastric ulcers and prevent development of certain types of cancer.
Arugula was very popular in the Ancient Rome because of its aphrodisiac properties.
Arugula is an annual plant (life span: one year).

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