Growing Spinach Seeds: How to have a bountiful harvest

Spinach is quickly becoming one of my favourite things to grow in the garden. It does well in cool weather so I set aside a large portion of my garden to grow spinach in both the spring and the fall. Here is a quick how to on growing spinach seeds, everything you’ll need to achieve a bountiful harvest.

Choosing Your Spinach Seeds

Most people picture spinach as the 6oz container of baby spinach you buy from the grocery store. While that is the most common variety there are many kinds to choose from.

  • Smooth Leaf Spinach: This spinach is the one we buy at the store. As the name suggests it has smooth leaves that are easy to wash. Harvest when the leaves are about an inch wide or slightly bigger.
  • Savoy Spinach: This is the variety that I grow in my garden by the name Bloomsdale Spinach. It grow well in cold weather and it grows fast enough I can harvest it about every 5 days.
  • Semi-Savoy Spinach: This variety grows more upright and has larger leaves. It is more disease resistant and does better in warm weather compared to the other varieties. I want to try this one soon!
  • New Zealand Spinach: This variety doesn’t grow like the other varieties. It’s more of a vine that grows along the ground. We grew this last year. I really like how it tastes fresh but it can also be cooked. We grew this because it does well in the warm temperature and we were able to grow it all summer long.
Spinach Seedling

Starting Your Spinach Seeds

Now that you have chosen the variety that you are going to grow it’s time to plant. Spinach prefers cool weather and partial shade, so choose a location that gets about 4-5 hours of sunlight per day and is protected from the hot afternoon sun.

It is better to direct sow than to transplant spinach. Plant spinach seeds about 4-6 weeks before the last frost date in your area. Sow the spinach seeds in a shallow trench spacing the seeds 2 to 3 inches apart at a depth of about a 1/2 inch. It is recommended you space your rows about 12-18 inches apart, personally I only space mine about 6 inches. I do this because I harvest regularly when the leaves are small and tender so I don’t need as much space between rows.

sprouted spinach seeds that were planted in garden bed.

Prepare the soil:

Spinach likes fertile, well-drained soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. Add compost or aged manure to the soil before planting to improve soil fertility and structure.

Caring for your Spinach:

  • Watering: Keep the soil moist but not waterlogged. Spinach needs consistent moisture to grow well, so water deeply once or twice a week, depending on the weather.
  • Protect from pests: Spinach is susceptible to pests like aphids, slugs, and leaf miners. Use row covers to protect your plants from pests, and remove any damaged leaves or plants to prevent the spread of disease.
  • Fertilize as needed: Spinach is a heavy feeder and benefits from regular fertilization. Use a balanced fertilizer every 3-4 weeks to promote healthy growth and a bountiful harvest.

Harvesting Your Spinach:

Harvest spinach when the leaves are large enough to eat, usually 4-6 weeks after planting. Pick the outer leaves first, leaving the inner leaves to continue growing. Regular harvesting will promote continued growth and a bountiful harvest.

By following these tips, you can grow spinach successfully and enjoy a bountiful harvest of delicious, nutritious greens. Also, if you enjoy the variety of spinach that you grew, and would like to grow it again next year, save your own spinach seeds and follow my spinach seed saving guide. We also have more growing guides available for all your growing needs.

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