How to Successfully Cultivate Mizuna and Other Green Leafy Vegetables in a Container Window Box or Garden.


Growing Mizuna and other greens in a container window box or garden is a great way to enjoy fresh, healthy Asian greens right at home. Mizuna, also known as Japanese mustard greens, is a popular vegetable in Asia and California due to its spicy and slightly peppery flavor.

Mizuna is a cool-season green that grows well in containers and is easy to care for. It can be planted in pots or directly in the ground, as long as the location is well-drained and gets at least 4-6 hours of sunlight per day. Mizuna is a fast-growing annual plant that can be harvested as early as three weeks after planting.

Mizuna is similar to other Asian greens like tatsoi and raab, but has a longer, more slender leaf. It grows in a rosette shape, with leaves that are deeply lobed and serrated. Mizuna can be harvested by thinning out the plants, or by cutting the outer leaves as needed. This allows the other plants to have enough space to grow, and ensures a continuous harvest throughout the growing season.

Mizuna is not only delicious, but also packed with nutrients. It is rich in vitamins A, C, and K, as well as folate and calcium. It can be used in a variety of dishes, from salads and stir-fries to soups and stews. One of our favourite recipes is a Mizuna salad with added melon, beans, and snap peas, dressed with a tangy Asian dressing.

If you’re a fan of mizuna and other greens, why not try growing them yourself? With the right information and some simple tips, you can have a healthy and productive container window box or garden full of delicious greens all season long.

Growing and Saving the Seed of Mizuna

Mizuna is a flowering plant that is very popular among growers. It is a variety of Chinese mustard greens and is commonly grown for its spicy and sweet flavor. Mizuna is also a great addition to salads and mesclun mixes.

Growing mizuna from seed is relatively easy and can be done in containers or in a garden bed. The first step is to choose a well-drained container or garden spot. Mizuna thrives in full sun but can tolerate some shade during the hot summer months.

Plant the mizuna seedlings at least 6 inches apart and about 1/4 inch deep in moist soil. Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged, and water the plants regularly, especially during dry spells. Mizuna is a fast-growing plant and may bolt in hot weather, so be sure to harvest the leaves regularly to prevent flowering and maintain a tender texture.

Harvesting mizuna is a simple process. Just cut the outer leaves with a sharp knife or scissors, leaving the center of the plant to continue growing. Mizuna leaves are a popular choice for Asian dishes and can be used in stir-fries, soups, or as a garnish for other vegetables.

If you want to save the seed of mizuna for future planting, just let the plant go to seed. Mizuna will produce small white flowers that will eventually form pods filled with seeds. Allow the pods to dry on the plant, and then collect them for storage. Make sure to label the container with the name and date of the seed, as well as any other important information.

It is important to note that mizuna is a biennial plant, meaning it will take two growing seasons to complete its life cycle. In the first year, it will grow leaves and produce flowers and seed in the second year. However, if you live in a warm climate like California, mizuna may be grown as an annual and can complete its life cycle in one growing season.

In conclusion, growing and saving the seed of mizuna can be a rewarding experience. This healthy and flavorful green can be easily grown in containers or in the garden, making it a great choice for both beginners and experienced gardeners. Whether you use it in salads, stir-fries, or other dishes, the spicy and sweet flavor of mizuna is sure to complement your meals.

Grow Mizuna and Other Greens in a Container Window Box or Garden

Mizuna, also known as nipposinica, is a versatile and easy-to-grow green that is popular in Asian cuisine. It can be grown in containers, window boxes, or garden beds, making it suitable for any size of space.

Mizuna seeds are small and can be started indoors or directly sown in the garden. Start by filling small pots or trays with well-drained soil. Plant the seeds about half an inch deep, and keep the soil moist. They will usually sprout in about 7-10 days.

Alternatively, you can also sow the seeds directly in the garden. Prepare the soil by removing any weeds or large stones, and create rows that are 12-18 inches apart. Plant the seeds about half an inch apart, cover them with soil, and water gently.

Mizuna plants grow quickly and are ready for harvesting in less than a month. When the plants reach about 6 inches tall, you can start picking the leaves. Harvest by cutting the leaves off about an inch above the base of the plant. Mizuna can be harvested continuously throughout the growing season.

One of the great things about growing mizuna is that it is quite resistant to pests and diseases. However, it is always good practice to keep an eye out for any signs of trouble such as aphids or caterpillars. If any pests are spotted, they can be removed by hand or treated with an organic pesticide.

Mizuna is best grown in cooler weather, as it can bolt and become bitter when temperatures get too high. It is a great addition to salads and stir-fries, and can even be used as a substitute for lettuce in sandwiches. Its mild, slightly peppery flavor adds a unique touch to any dish.

Other greens, such as mesclun or Asian greens like bok choy and tatsoi, can be grown in a similar way. They can be planted alongside mizuna to create a vibrant and diverse container garden or window box.

Overall, growing mizuna and other greens is a rewarding and enjoyable experience. Whether you have a small window box or a large garden, these versatile plants can thrive and provide you with a plentiful harvest.

Growing Tips

  • Mizuna, a member of the Brassicaceae family, is a popular leafy green vegetable that is grown for its spicy and slightly bitter flavor.
  • It is very easy to grow Mizuna in a container or window box, making it an ideal choice for urban gardeners or those with limited outdoor space.
  • When choosing a container, opt for one that is at least 6 inches deep to allow for proper root growth. Alternatively, you can also grow Mizuna in pots or individual cells, which makes it easier to separate the plants for harvesting.
  • Mizuna can be grown indoors or outdoors, depending on your location and the time of year. It prefers cooler temperatures and can be sown directly in the garden or started indoors and transplanted when the seedlings are ready.
  • For best results, sow Mizuna seeds about 1/4 inch deep and thin the seedlings to about 3 inches apart once they have reached a height of around 2 inches.
  • Mizuna grows relatively quickly and can be harvested within 4-6 weeks, depending on the variety and growing conditions.
  • Harvest the leaves by cutting them at the base, leaving the center of the plant to continue growing.
  • Mizuna can be added to salads, stir-fries, or used as a garnish. Its tender, young leaves are best for salads, while the older leaves are more suitable for cooking.
  • Store Mizuna in a sealed bag in the refrigerator for up to one week.
  • Mizuna can also be grown alongside other greens like mesclun or rapini for a diverse and colorful garden.
  • Mizuna is not only tasty but also packed with healthy nutrients, including vitamins A, C, and K, and minerals like calcium and iron.
  • For a quick and easy recipe, try tossing Mizuna with a simple vinaigrette dressing and some toasted nuts for added crunch.
  • Whether you are an experienced grower or just starting out, Mizuna is a great addition to any kitchen garden. It requires little care and provides a bountiful harvest of delicious and nutritious greens.

Recipe MoMo’s Greens with Sweet and Spicy Dressing

Below is a recipe for MoMo’s Greens, a delicious salad that features mizuna and other Asian greens. Mizuna is a cool-season green that is easy to grow in containers or in a garden. It grows well in both sunny and shady locations, making it a versatile addition to any garden.

To grow mizuna, simply plant the seeds in a container or directly in the garden. It is best to plant mizuna in the autumn or early spring. The seeds should be planted about a quarter inch deep and spaced about three inches apart. Mizuna grows quickly and can be ready to harvest in just a few weeks.

When harvesting mizuna, pick the leaves when they are about six inches long. The leaves can be used in a variety of ways, including raw in salads or cooked in stir-fries and soups. Mizuna has a mild, slightly peppery flavor that is reminiscent of mustard greens.

For this recipe, you will need:

  • Mizuna and other Asian greens
  • Beans, snap peas, or broccoli
  • Potatoes
  • Garlic

For the dressing, you will need:

  • Sweet and spicy dressing
  • Asian spices

Start by planting your mizuna in a container or garden. Mizuna prefers well-draining soil and should be watered regularly, but be careful not to over-water as it can lead to root rot. Mizuna is also a heavy feeder and will benefit from regular feeding with a balanced fertilizer.

Once your mizuna is ready to harvest, gather the leaves and wash them thoroughly. Combine your mizuna with other Asian greens, such as bok choy or Chinese cabbage. Add some beans, snap peas, or broccoli for added texture and flavor.

In a separate bowl, mix together your sweet and spicy dressing. This can be made using a combination of Asian spices, such as soy sauce, ginger, and chili flakes. Adjust the seasoning to your taste preferences.

Toss the greens and vegetables with the dressing until well coated. Serve immediately and enjoy your MoMo’s Greens with Sweet and Spicy Dressing!

This recipe is a favourite in Asia and is a great way to enjoy the fresh, crisp flavors of mizuna and other Asian greens. Give it a try and see how much better your salads can be with the addition of these tasty greens!

✿ Read More: Gardening Tips and Advice.

Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.