It can even be used as a cover crop for other plants like egg plant or tomatoes. Watering and feeding African kale have shallow roots, so it is important to keep the soil where they grow moist but not soggy. Introducing "One Thing": A New Video Series, North America, Central America, South America, Asia. While there are many different spinach varieties with an assortment of leaf shapes and textures, spinach is usually divided into two major categories: smooth leaf and savoy. The best temperature for growing spinach is between 16ºC and 24ºC. Plant seeds in a shallow rut about a quarter-inch deep and an inch apart. I direct-sow a second planting later in spring, when the soil has warmed enough to support steady germination. Spinach leaves are very sensitive to the ethylene gas given off by many fruits, so don't store spinach in the refrigerator with apples, melons, or tomatoes. How to Plant Spinach Although seeds can be started indoors, it is not recommended, as seedlings are difficult to transplant. For spinach, long days that last more than 14 hours are a trigger to switch from vegetative to reproductive growth. You can also grow spinach in the shade cast by taller vegetable plants and near plants that will begin spreading out as the spinach finishes its season, such as pole beans and corn. For a fall crop, plant seeds up to … You can also add nitrogen into soil using fertilizer or compost. Probably not, but growing a spring crop of spinach will maximize your garden’s nutritional output of delicious, garden-fresh greens. Typically, you can harvest spinach four to six weeks from seed. Even a relatively small 10- to 12-inch pot or a window box will do. Grow spinach in full sun or if you live in Texas as I do, or another blazingly hot and sunny locale, it can take partial shade, and may demand it. Light, frequent watering will help the leaves develop quickly and produce a high-quality plant. Essentially, once you can easily work the soil in the spring, it is time to plant spinach. As gardeners, the biggest payoff comes when baby leaves are left intact so the plants can quickly grow into robust, almost-mature teens. Chill your leaf spinach immediately to limit the loss of vitamin C, which is always highest in freshly harvested spinach. Space spinach plants 12 inches apart in fertile, well-drained soil with a pH of 6.5 to 7.0. Cool-season weeds must be plucked out to keep them from overrunning the bed, but spinach seedlings are sturdy little plants. Will eating plenty of fresh spinach pump up your muscles like it did for Popeye? Spinach also matures and goes to seed quickly, so it is better to re-seed every couple of weeks than to try and plant a large crop to harvest over time. Fish emulsion and soy meal are good organic choices for spinach. You can start your spring spinach as seedlings, direct-sown seeds, or both. Since spinach is grown when the weather is cool and damp, several fungal diseases, such as downy mildew (blue mold) and fusarium wilt, can become problems. At a well-stocked produce market, you might choose between baby spinach, larger leaf spinach known as teenage spinach, or mature plants tied into a bundle. Spinach varieties come in Savoy, Semi-savoy, and Flat-leafed types, with many cultivars of each. The ideal germination temperature for spinach is 70°F (21°C). To grow spinach in a pot, use a container that is at least 8 inches (20 cm.) Spinach can be harvested in the "cut and the come again" method of harvesting leafy greens like lettuce. Like most dark green leafy vegetables, spinach also contains the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. Because it is such a fast grower, spinach is also a heavy feeder. Aphids pose a risk to spinach because they can spread viruses. Learn how to spinach in pots, it is one of the vegetables that you can grow in some shade.Growing spinach in containers is easy too you can even grow it indoors on a windowsill.. USDA Zones— 3 – 11. Monitor your crop for aphids regularly and hose them off immediately if you find them. Sowing Depth Sow seeds at … A fertilizer high in nitrogen, the first number on the fertilizer package, will help produce dark, healthy leaves. You can extend the season slightly by planting in the shade of taller plants and regularly watering your spinach plants. Winter Salads and Herbs for Your Windowsill. Several four-legged pests, rabbits chief among them, may also raid your spinach patch. But this plant has been crossbred so much that it's often hard to categorize. In warm climates, plant spinach in the shade of tall crops such as corn or beans. Cut individual leaves, starting with the older, outer leaves and letting the young inner leaves remain to continue growing for a later harvest. As the weather warms, spinach plants will bolt more quickly. BULAWAYO, (IPS) – Piles and piles of rotting vegetables at food markets situated right in Zimbabwe’s central business district would elsewhere be viewed as a sign of plenty. How to Grow Spinach. Spinach is sown throughout the year. Pollen-producing male plants bolt a few days ahead of seed-bearing females, and in both cases it is best to pull up and compost the plants. Spinach is a easy to grow green leafy vegetable which is rich in nutrients. The ideal germination temperature for spinach is 70°F (21°C). This type of spinach takes an average of 25 days to grow baby leaves and 5 weeks for full maturity. In any area, don't wait all week, then deep-water; it's better to water several times per week at a minimum. Sow seeds in a shallow moist drill and cover lightly with soil. Sow your spinach seeds about 1/2 an inch deep, pushed directly into the container or a seed tray. Space your spinach plants so they get good air circulation and try to keep water off the leaves in the evening. Feed spinach planted in pots and containers with Tui NovaTec Premium fertiliser. Spinach prefers a well-draining soil with a neutral pH and won't be happy at a pH lower than 6.0. Studies have shown that giving spinach an early start in cool soil may delay bolting, so don’t worry about setting out seedlings while the soil is still chilly. Spinach is a leafy green vegetable that grows best in cool weather. For spring season complete sowing from Mid-February to April. For a spring crop, spinach can be planted as early as four to six weeks before the last frost date, or as early as the soil is able to be worked. Learn tips for creating your most beautiful (and bountiful) garden ever. Leave around 3 inches of space in between seeds for the best results. (We won't display this on the website or use it for marketing), (Please enter the code above to help prevent spam on this article), Expert Tips for Growing Extra-Early Salad Crops, Charmed by Chicories: Growing Garden Endive, Escarole, and Radicchio, Keep Growing! For new gardeners, one of the great things about growing spinach is being about to distinguish the seedlings from weeds. True spinach (Spinacea oleracia) grows best in the cooler temperatures of spring and fall, although early and late varieties can extend the season into summer and winter. Plant spinach during the cool weather of spring and fall. The e-mail does not appear to be correct. Spinach can grow even in shade. In most climates, it grows best when planted in spring and fall, since it needs relatively cool temperatures to thrive. (If you have difficulty using this form, please use our Contact Form to send us your comment, along with the title of this article. Packed with iron, spinach is also high in vitamins A and C, thiamin, potassium, and folic acid (one of the B-complex vitamins). Keep the soil moist until germination. She can be reached on Cell: 0779 730 880 or 16 Metcalf Road, Greendale, Harare. Chaya was long used by the Mayans of the Yucatan Peninsula as a food crop and a medicinal plant. Spinach roots need at least 1 foot (30 cm) of space to grow. Water spinach frequently to keep the soil moist; this also helps keep it cool during hot weather. If you've seen any pests or beneficial insects in your garden in the past few days please report them to The Big Bug Hunt and help create a warning system to alert you when bugs are heading your way. Spinach will grow well in raised beds, planters, or directly in the ground. Keep the seedlings shaded and watered and in the summer heat, and they should be ready to harvest beginning in September. Starke Ayres is the foremost African specialist and global supplier of premium vegetable seed, flower seed and lawn seed – both for commercial farming and home garden planting. Cover the seeds lightly with soil, firm it in place, and water well. Perhaps best of all, spinach tastes great eaten fresh or cooked. Wash the leaves well and allow them to dry somewhat before placing in a resealable freezer bag. In addition to a spring planting, you can start seeding again at the beginning of August. Avoid the butternut ripening on the plant as this prevents new flowers from development. Well watered, well nourished spinach will have a better chance of keeping insect pests and diseases at bay. Sow about 12 seeds per foot of row, or sprinkle over a wide row or bed. Spinach is one of the few vegetables with beets and chard that prefers a neutral to alkaline soil (pH 7.0 or above).If your garden soil is sandy and acid, be sure to get a lime recommendation based on a soil test before planting spinach. Spinach grows in a range of humidity conditions, including very dry climates. The winter rains should do most of the work for you, but keep an eye on your spinach and don’t let the soil dry out. It's advised not to tuck spinach in a flower bed, since too many critters will make a snack of it. I start seeds indoors for my earliest planting, because in late winter spinach seeds germinate better inside where it’s warm. The leaves of bolting spinach plants taste bitter, and once spinach bolting begins, the plants will not go back to producing tasty new leaves. Eating spinach regularly may help normalize blood sugar levels, prevent cancer, promote stronger bones, and undo the damage done to our circulatory systems when we eat too many fats. The name “chaya” is derived from the Mayan name “chay”. Sow seeds ½-inch to 1-inch deep, covering lightly with soil. Clive Biggs spoke to Mike Burgess about the family’s well-adapted Nandi Nguni stud in the foothills of the Drakensberg near Cedarville. Keep the soil moist until germination. The best defense against them is fencing. Sow the spinach seeds thinly in rows spaced about 12 to 18 inches apart, or simply scatter the seeds in blocks. Alternatively, 2 inches of space is okay if you want to harvest your leaves earlier in the season. Happy farming and gardening week! Once the plants have a grown their true leaves, … Spinach prefers full sun, but it is one of the few vegetables that can also tolerate some … Spinach seedlings throw out long, strappy seedling leaves that make them easy to identify when a new bed is bursting with unknown green things. If need be, provide a row cover or cold frame to protect the crop. Spinach can be persnickety, as it is one of the only vegetables that insist on a nearly neutral pH, which in this case is 6.0 to 6.8. Spinach grows best in the relatively cool days of spring and fall, even during the short days of fall. Small-leafed spinach, or baby spinach, has gained in popularity recently and is not necessarily immature spinach leaves but varieties that simply don't get large. Plant as you would in the garden. Add your own thoughts on the subject of this article: Harvesting is done when butternut is about 15cm length. You can, however, take advantage of the shadier spots of a fenced-in vegetable garden, where most other vegetable plants would languish. Prevent soil-borne diseases by growing African kale in the same spot no more than once every three years. Once the plants have a grown their true leaves, you can begin to thin the plants to about 6 inches apart. When this happens, new leaves become smaller and more pointed, and the center of the plant rises and elongates into a stalk – a process called bolting. Plant spinach where it will receive full sun to partial shade. Frozen spinach is best used within three to six months. You can then harvest spinach by pinching off the best two or three leaves from each plant every five days or so for up to two weeks. Sowing and Growing Spinach You can start your spring spinach as seedlings, direct-sown seeds, or both. If eating more nutritious foods is one of your gardening goals, you will want to get busy growing spinach, a cool-season veggie to raise in spring and fall. Growing spinach in containers is an easy crop to start with. This type of spinach has attractive and dark green leaves. If you choose to plant spinach in October you are for sure planning for the future. If space is tight or rabbits are many, you can easily grow spinach in containers. This spinach plant takes less time to turn into seeds therefore fast in bolting. It can be cut and kept at a height of around 1-2 meters for easy harvesting. Sow the spinach seeds thinly in rows spaced about 12 to 18 inches apart, or simply scatter the seeds in blocks. Other Names— Spinacia oleracea (Scientific Name), Persian vegetable, palak, bōsī cài, 波斯菜, leafy greens. This way you end up reusing garden space. You can continue sowing spinach seeds late into the fall season. Fill the pot loosely with moist, nitrogen-rich soil. Spinach grows quite quickly, so don't start plants indoors more than a two to three weeks before you plan to transplant them outdoors. Growing spinach in containers is an easy crop to start with. Cover the seed with soil and press gently. If protected by a hoop house or cold frame you will find the spinach grows slowly while we have less than 10 hours of daylight. However, it’s important to note that spinach seeds do not germinate well at soil temperatures above 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Difficulty— Easy. Provide good care for growing spinach. In warmer climates, you could quite possibly be harvesting well into winter. When spinach seeds are primed in this way, the first stage of germination takes place under warm, clean conditions, so the seeds are much faster to sprout after they are planted in the garden. Spinach can handle cold weather, but hot temps will end your harvest before it ever gets started. This process involves soaking the seeds in room temperature water overnight, then letting them dry at room temperature for a day or two. Then zap them in the microwave for about one minute on high. This week in our nursery we have the following seedlings: rape, tsunga, hybrid covo rugare, spinach, lettuce commander, and green pepper, king onion and beets. It does not really need much space and care to grow. How to Grow Spinach in Pots Sow spinach successionally every few weeks to ensure a continuous crop. 29 March 2019, written by Barbara Pleasant. All this in a delicious, high fiber package! The harvested crop can store up to 3 months in a clean well ventilated room. To improve my germination luck, I prime spinach seeds a few days before planting them. In dry climates, you may need to water every day, sometimes more often. For a fall crop, sow seeds from late summer to early fall, or as late as 4-6 weeks before the first frost date. You can begin harvesting whenever the leaves are large enough for your taste. October planted spinach will likely germinate late in the month and possibly get one or two “true leaves” before the cold sets in. Spinach is very fast-growing and can be ready to harvest in as little as one month after it's planted as seed. Spinach can be frozen for later use. You will want to have plenty of crisp leaves to enjoy in strawberry-gilded salads, one of the peak experiences to expect when you get into growing spinach. While your spinach are growing regularly apply a dose of Tui Organic Seaweed Plant … Doreen Mutobaya Badze is a retired nurse and passion-driven gardener. The young plants will be spared the hottest sun and be ready for harvest in … Be sure to wash your spinach thoroughly in cool water before eating it, taking care to remove soil that often clings to the undersides of the leaves. Once the weather warms in spring, water your spinach in the heat of the afternoon to cool it down and keep the soil cool for the evening. Spinach likes lots of water. Harvest baby leaves for use in salads or mature leaves to wilt for use in … On 9 May 2020, the Biggs family, who farms in the Eastern Cape, sold a Nguni herd sire for a world-record price of R310 000. 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