This is the latest in a series of posts that I’ve done about my favorite varieties of fruits, vegetables and herbs we grow at Happy Acres. To see my other Spotlights, and those from other garden bloggers, visit the Variety Spotlights page.
Today’s spotlight is on a great tasting variety of arugula called Apollo. According to the Seed Savers Exchange, where I bought my seeds, Apollo is an “improved Dutch strain of domesticated rocket.” Though known as Arugula to most Americans, the plant Eruca sativa is called Rocket in Britain and Rucola in Italy. It’s my third year growing Apollo here at Happy Acres.
Apollo has large, rounded leaves that are less bitter tasting than many other strains of arugula. The taste really improves in cold weather, and I think the leaves become especially sweet and flavorful then. Like most forms of arugula, Apollo is very cold hardy, and usually survives the winter here in my USDA Zone 6b garden. In the winter greenhouse, I can generally cut Apollo for harvest throughout the winter. It also does well in containers, like my salad boxes I use in the greenhouse.
Those large leaves are also a plus, in my opinion. All things considered, the bigger the leaves the bigger the harvests, and Apollo has some of the biggest leaves I have ever seen on arugula. It doesn’t seem to make them any less tender either. The leaves of Apollo also have smooth edges, which makes for more usable leaf area.
I have not noticed that Apollo is any more or less prone to bolting than other strains of arugula. It is listed by the SSE at taking 40-45 days to full maturity, but of course it is edible at all stages of growth.
I hope you have enjoyed this spotlight on a tasty and productive strain of arugula. Seeds for Apollo arugula are available in the U.S. from the Seed Savers Exchange. I’ll be back soon with another variety.