Spinach is a fantastic vegetable to grow in your kitchen garden. Spinach can produce healthy edible leaves all year round, providing nutrition and great tasting food that you can enjoy in every month of the year. It is a cut and come again crop that just keeps on giving.

Growing spinach:

Spinach performs and tastes best when it is placed in a soil that is rich and contains plenty of nutritious organic matter. In summer if there is any chance of drought where you live then you should be sure to water spinach well and consistently. It should be protected from extremes of temperature. Spinach can be prone to bolting in less than ideal conditions, though if kept happy it can produce tender, delicious leaves all year.

A good organic mulch will help spinach by retaining some water around its roots in the summer and by keeping the roots somewhat insulated in the colder weather. As a leafy vegetable, spinach will benefit from a good plant feed, high in nitrogen. In the warmest summer weather, spinach will do better if provided with some shade by taller plants – a little shade from the hottest sun should stop the plant from bolting.

Some varieties of spinach on the market are bolt-resistant and there are varieties to suit different conditions and that are better suited to certain times of year. Be sure to buy the right sort of seeds to suit the circumstances of your garden and the season. All varieties grown over winter must be undercover or, if outside, will need to be protected from the elements using a cloche or by protecting the crown with a thick layer of straw or leaves.

Spinach leaves can be attractive to birds so if you encounter a problem you may have to net your crop in order to obtain a yield for yourself. Water at the base of the plants rather than on the foliage to try to prevent spinach downy mildew which can be bad in mild, humid weather.

Leaves can be harvested as soon as they are big enough to pick. As with all cut and come again crops you should be sure to harvest leaves regularly to ensure a continued supply of tender new leaves.

Why grow spinach in the garden?

Spinach not only tastes good it is also very healthy for you. It contains a good number of vitamins and minerals for optimum health and fitness. Spinach is very versatile and can be used in the kitchen in a number of ways. Baby leaves can be used in delicious salads, while older leaves can be steamed or wilted for use in numerous recipes.

Spinach and cauliflowers are said to work well as companion plants in the garden. Spinach may also be a good companion for other brassicas.

Quick Facts

Latin Name
Spinacia oleracea