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Brassica juncea

Brassica juncea (L.) Czern.

Brassica integrifolia (Vahl) O.E.Schulz non Rupr.

Brassica integrifolia Rupr.

Brassica japonica Thunb.

Brassica juncea (L.) Czern. var. crispifolia L.H. Bailey

Brassica juncea (L.) Czern. var. japonica (Thunb.) L.H. Bailey

Brassica willdenowii Boiss.

Sinapis juncea L.

Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassMagnoliopsidaDicotyledons—plants with two initial seed leaves
SubclassRosidaeRoses, legumes, proteas, dogwoods, hydrangeas, mistletoes, euphorbias, grapes, many more
OrderBrassicalesMustard, cabbage, caper, papaya, nasturtiums, many others; most produce mustard oil
FamilyBrassicaceaeMustards, cabbages
GenusBrassicaA Latin name for “cabbage”
SpeciesjunceaRush-like, referring to the leafless stems of this plant

About plant names...

Brown mustard originated in Asia, but has become naturalized throughout North America

Plants: Up to 3' (1 m) tall, with long, erect branches.

Leaves: Lower leaves have petioles (stems), are green but sometimes with a whitish covering, ovate to obovate, with various undulating margins that might be called toothed, scalloped, or frilled. Upper leaves are on shorter stems or sessile, 1-2" (3-6 cm) × ¹/₁₆-⅛" (2-3.5 mm), sometimes constricted, thinning to a short seedless beak ⅛-⅜" (5-10 mm) long.

Flowers: Flowers are pale yellow, a bit scraggly, with four petals, about ½" (1.3 cm) around. They appear in June.

Fruits: Fruits are shaped like thin beans, ½-1½" (1.5-4 cm) long. Seeds are miniscule: there are well over 15,000 in an ounce.

Edibility: Leaves, flowers, and young flowering stems are peppery flavored, eaten raw or cooked. Seeds are used to create prepared brown mustard. Brown mustard shows up in various forms in a wide variety of Asian, African, and American cuisines.

Online References:

Brassica juncea on the New England Wildflower Society’s GoBotany site

Brassica juncea at Purdue University's Center for New Crops and Plants Products

Brassica juncea on Plants for a Future, a resource and information centre for edible and otherwise useful plants

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/27/2015 · Two Lights, Cape Elizabeth, ME
≈ 1¾ × 2" (4.9 × 5.2 cm)

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/17/2010 · Kennebunkport, ME
≈ 9 × 6" (23 × 15 cm) ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

8/1/2012 · Fort Point State Park, Stockton Springs, ME ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/15/2012 · Fort Point State Park, Stockton Springs, ME
≈ 5 × 3½" (13 × 9.2 cm) ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 3 Jul 2017.

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Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/15/2012 · Fort Point State Park, Stockton Springs, ME
≈ 8 × 5" (19 × 13 cm) ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

8/1/2012 · Fort Point State Park, Stockton Springs, ME ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/27/2015 · Two Lights, Cape Elizabeth, ME
≈ 3½ × 2½" (9.4 × 6.3 cm)

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/15/2012 · Fort Point State Park, Stockton Springs, ME
≈ 17 × 12" (44 × 29 cm) ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/15/2012 · Fort Point State Park, Stockton Springs, ME
≈ 15 × 10" (39 × 26 cm) ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/17/2010 · Kennebunkport, ME
≈ 5 × 3½" (13 × 9.2 cm) ID is uncertain

Brassica juncea (Brown Mustard, Mustard Greens, Indian Mustard, Chinese Mustard, Kai Choi)

7/17/2010 · Kennebunkport, ME
≈ 9 × 6" (22 × 14 cm) ID is uncertain

Range: Zones 2-11:

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