Spinach - Bloomsdale Spinach
'Bloomsdale' is an old favourite among gardeners from 1800s. Cold hardy, dark leaves are delicious and full of nutrients, vitamin A, C and iron. Great for containers!
How to Sow
- Sow in early spring for the first crop, again in late summer for a fall crop.
- Sow in average, well-worked soil in a sunny location.
- In rows 1 ½-2 feet apart, sow seeds evenly and cover with ½ inch of fine soil. Firm lightly and water gently.
- Seedlings emerge in 7-14 days depending on soil and weather conditions.
- Thin gradually to stand 6 inches apart starting when seedlings are about 1-2 inches high. Do not thin baby leaf spinach.
How to Grow
- Keep weeds under control during the growing season. Weeds compete with plants for water, space and nutrients, so control them by either cultivating often or use a mulch to prevent their seeds from germinating. Avoid disturbing the soil around the plants when weeding as spinach is shallow rooted.
- Keep plants well watered during dry periods to promote rapid, uninterrupted growth. Plants need about 1-1 ½ inches of rain per week during the growing season. Use a rain gauge to check to see if you need to add water. It’s best to water with a drip or trickle system that delivers water at low pressure at the soil level. If you water with overhead sprinklers, water early in the day so the foliage has time to dry off before evening, to minimize disease problems. Keep the soil moist but not saturated.
- Monitor for pests and diseases. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for pest controls recommended for your area.
Harvest and Preserving Tips
- Harvest the outer leaves when 3 inches long.
- Snip baby leaf as needed when the leaves reach about 2 inches.
- When the warm weather arrives and seed stalks start to develop, harvest the entire plant immediately.
- Leaves can be sautéed or steamed as well as eaten raw.
- Wash, dry and store in a perforated plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to a week.