Eruca sativa (arugula)
Herbaceous annual, 15–50 cm in height, with upright stems, pinnate leaves, racemose inflorescence and cream-colored dark-veined flowers. Dispersal by wind and humans.
Ancient crop, known in the Mediterranean region since Roman times, used to be considered an aphrodisiac. Previously grown in Germany, then fell into oblivion. The kind of rocket on offer these days is usually a different species, namely Diplotaxis tenuifolia (perennial wallrocket).
Native to the Mediterranean, among others to Italy. Unstable neophyte in southern Germany, occasionally introduced in contaminated seed stock, for example, in the seed of Persian clover.
Valerianella locusta (lamb’s lettuce)
Valerianaceae (valerian family)
Annual herbaceous plant, 10–25 cm tall, leaf rosettes formed in autumn, tiny pale blue flowers and small nut fruits the following spring, already dying off in early summer. Dispersal at close range as a hydrochore and by cystometeorochory.
Wild in vineyards, in grasslands, on the edges of fields and on embankments, in former times often on fields. Grown as a hardy salad since about 1700 in large-leaf cultivars in gardens, on fields and in unheated greenhouses.
Indigenous to the Mediterranean and sub-Mediterranean climatic regions of Europe, for a long time native in Central Europe. Known in southern Germany since the Neolithic Age, archaeophyte.