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Growing spinach at home
#1
Spinach (Spinacia oleracea) is a green leafy plant native to central and western Asia. Its leaves are edible and can be consumed either fresh, or after storage using preservation techniques by canning, freezing, or dehydration. It can be eaten by blanching, steaming or sautéing or raw.

Spinach can be sown all year round except December to February. Since spinach roots do not grow very long and thick its best to use loose soil for planting.

Germination

The process of soaking the seeds in water for 24hrs before planting will speed up the germination process as opposed to unsoaked seeds which would take about 15 days to germinate.

You can either germinate the seed in the pot or use seeding trays and then transfer them to pots.

Planting

To grow your spinach, you can use any kind of potting soil which you can either buy from a nursery or your nearest Krishi Bhavan. As the roots of spinach don’t grow very long the best kind of pot to use would be a shallow one, but if you don’t have those, you can use any pot or even the grow bag.

Once you have your pot and your soil, the next step is planting. Place about three inches of soil in your pot, then evenly spread the seeds on the soil bed. Then cover the seeds with another layer of soil. Make sure that the upper layer of soil is evenly spread and covering the seeds. Once the seeds are covered, water them. See to it that you are not overwatering. For spinach to grow the soil needs to be moist. So check the soil regularly to make sure that the soil is moist. The best time to water the plants would be in the morning.

If you are germinating the seeds in a seed starter; make a depression that is half an inch deep and plant the seeds about 3 inches apart to give them space to breathe and grow.

Thinning

Spinach takes about 50-60 days to mature. You can harvest spinach at any stage during its growth. After the leaves have grown about 3 inches you can start thinning the plants. This is done by plucking some of the plants along with the root. This way you can leave the rest of the plants in the pot to mature before harvesting.

Harvesting

There are two ways to harvest your spinach; the first is to pull them out along with the roots. The second is to either cut or simply pinch the leaves off the stem making sure not to pull the roots out. This method of harvesting will make the plant give you another yield.

Before using the leaves let them rest in water. This will allow the dust and sand particles to settle at the bottom. Dry these leaves on a paper towel before storing in the fridge.
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