Written by: Charoula Dontopoulos
For the last few days, the back of my herbal garden (about 20 feet long) has been entirely taken over by my beautiful and wild White Mustard plants. This started a few years ago, a couple of wild plants that sprang up in early spring, and I let them grow as they pleased when I managed to identify them as Wild White Mustard!

They are truly compact, and wild, and need to be confined a little, but they look beautiful, and taste spicy enough without being too burning on the tongue.

Mustards belong to the Brassica or Crucifera plant queendom (!) which also includes Broccoli, Cabbage and other wild greens.

The leaves, on top of being spicy, also tend to be bitter, especially as they age on the plant, so I make sure that I start cutting them early on. They remind me a little of Dandelion leaves–(Greens)– which are definitely bitter, but Wild Mustard is spicier and less bitter—delicious!

I eat them either steamed, or sprinkle some leaves on our salads—it adds great taste to the salad.

Remember, however, that once Wild Mustard greens have been “cooked”, they do tend to lose some of their taste—which is actually the proof of their benefits!

That is why I prefer them primarily as an addition to our spring salad.

And do remember what we have already talked about in relation to other plants: Bitter taste has great advantages, it is detoxifying (removes waste products from our body), it is cooling and purifying—according to the Ayurveda classification of the six tastes(which we will be talking about soon!), which basically means that it helps clear our system of bodily toxins.

Bitter foods, again according to Ayurvedic Science, also “help mental purification by freeing us from passions and sultry emotions”!!

So what do we have to lose, eating Wild Mustard from our garden? !!!

Wild Mustard is a wonderful Herb and I heartily recommend it to all our readers.  In fact, as soon as this blog is finished, I am going outdoors to pick and taste –RAW- my Wild Mustard!!!

In good health with Greens!!

Charoula

If you have questions on any of the above herbs and their use, please contact me:

Ask Charoula about Herbs

All answers are posted on our website E-Wellness.com, on the following Friday.

Thanks for reading!

Charoula Dontopoulos
Certified Herbalist
Holistic Health Advisor
BC Polarity Therapy Practitioner

 


Questions and Answers

Not too many people sent in questions on Wild Mustard!

One needs a garden where they can go wild, and not too many people let their garden beds go “wild”!

But I think you would find how wonderful it is to let native “wild” plants grow along your with your “specimen” ones!

 

Anyway, I got a couple of questions that were interesting, and one of them had to do with the safety of the plant.

 

Q: I know Mustards can be very very spicy, to the point of being burning and creating a bad reaction in the system. Does this have more to do with how much of a full plate we eat vs. a handful of Mustards?

A: You got it!

Let me insert here an ancient Greek saying which always made sense to me:  Pan Metron Ariston, meaning :  Everything is ok — in good measure! (i.e. in the right amount!), I really believe in this, and so if we went out to the garden and picked some greens in good measure, and steamed them, and ate them with some olive oil and lemon on them, we would get all the benefits and experience no problems!

Q: I have spots in my garden where nothing really fancy wants to grow! What if I let some Mustards go to seed, pick the seed and go plant them there next spring, in order to fill up those spots?

A: Wow! Great idea!

This is what I think:  Learning about herbs, getting used to the idea that we do not just buy them online or at our local herbal store—but actually getting into the act of choosing which we need or like the taste of, buying or picking the seeds after they flowered, and growing them ourselves, is how we really get involved in our own personal healing.

And it is most important, if we live with a garden, or are near woods or prairies, to learn to identify them in the wild, pick them, and study them, make sure we know what they are, and then make our teas and creams and tinctures etc.with them.

It is SOOO much fun, I can hardly begin to tell you!

So go out and search them in Nature.  If you think something looks familiar, try Identifying it, ask, look up on the Internet, or better yet in an Herbal book!

But of course, be careful—there are for sure plants out there that may be a bit on the too wild side!!

………………………………

Please do consult your Holistic Health Practitioner, and most importantly your Herbalist before you use any herb, whether as a tincture, a tea, or a standardized extract.  Herbs are powerful!!!

 

I would love to hear more of your questions on any of our blogs, and specifically on any Issues you are wondering about!  Thanks for sending in your questions!

Ask Charoula about Herbs

Charoula