Spinach

Spinach

Along with its delicious taste, spinach can be grown very easily. Besides, you can harvest it throughout the year by sowing different cultivars. A sunny location is a must for winter cultivars. On the other hand, a little shade is beneficial for summer cultivars. 

We plant the perpetual spinach and enjoy this delicious vegetable for an extended period. We use it in salads and cooking. Mind you, when using it in your cooking, you need a heck of a lot of spinach leaves as it cooks down to almost nothing. So if that is your intention, I would suggest that you plant more than you think you will need.

Sowing

First and foremost, prepare the soil for sowing the spinach. For this purpose, add two bucketfuls of organic matter into the soil. After that, rake the soil with 150 g of general fertiliser in each square metre of soil.

To grow the spinach outdoors, sow them directly into the final location. Sow sparingly.

  • Make a 1-inch deep drill and spread the seeds sparingly over there.  
  • Ensure a distance of 1 foot between the rows.

Also, sowing the spinach seeds thinly in large containers is another option, and it may be the best choice for your circumstances if you don’t have much space to grow things.  

While sowing summer cultivars, keep the following things in mind:

  • Sow seeds every few weeks.
  • Cover the sowing location under cloches or fleece from February.
  • Uncover the plants from mid-March to the last days in May.

You can sow the hardy cultivars twice a year, once in August and then in September.

Growing

To grow the spinach effectively, follow the tips below.

  • Thin out the seedlings when they are grown enough. Make sure there is a distance of 3 inches between the seedlings after thinning out.
  • Harvest alternate plants after few weeks to give them enough space to grow.  
  • Ensure that soil is rich in nutrients. You can do so by adding plenty of organic matter, such as garden compost or manure, into the soil. It will not allow the leaves to taste bitter.  
  • Water the plants well in dry spells
  • Protect the winter cultivars from the cold. However, you don’t need to protect the plant in the milder regions of the UK. Fleece, straw or similar material is best for protection.

Harvesting

You can harvest the spinach when it is large enough. Typically, late May to the end of October is the time to harvest the summer cultivars. On the other hand, October to April is the time to pick the winter cultivars.

spinach

Common problems

Birds

Vegetables, leaves, buds, fruit and seedlings are the parts the birds eat the most. So you should take preventive measures to save your plants from being decimated.

Remedy

  • Bird-scaring or scarecrows helps prevent the birds from attacking. 
  • Use net or fleece to cover the plants.  

Bolting

It is the production of the premature flowering stem before the time of harvesting. It is also known as a natural process to produce seeds and reproduce.

Remedy

  • Prefer to sow bolting-resistant cultivars.
  • Never miss the right time of sowing.
  • Water the soil at the appropriate time and keep the compost moist.

Spinach downy mildew

Spinach down mildew is a disease that infests only spinach. It gets worse in humid and mild weather conditions. However, it does not affect the plants grown in gardens significantly if the weather is not wet.

Remedy

  • Provide enough space for spinach to grow.
  • Make the air circulation around the plants better. It’s possible if the plants have enough room to grow.
  • Sow the mildew resistant cultivars.
  • Water the soil at the plant base.

Looking for recipes using spinach? Try Delish, a website that lists over 40 recipes.

For more information or assistance with this article, or if you want to add something that you feel is relevant, we would love to hear from you via the Contact Us page.

08/06/2021 | Vegetables | 0 Comments

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