Growing spinach can be a tasking job for most people, especially if you’re not used to growing vegetables. This article answers the question of how to grow spinach along with 4 easy steps to guide you through.
What is Spinach?
Spinach is a vegetable associated with chilly weather and linked to beets and Swiss chard. It’s a quick-growing plant that produces a lot of leaves in the spring and fall when the temperature is favourable. While spinach grows best in full light, it may tolerate even partial shade and still yield a good crop.
How To Grow Spinach
Here are 4 easy step-by-step ways, showing you how to grow the spinach you’ve always wanted in your garden;
- Spinach is to be planted in the cool temperatures of spring and fall.
- Grow spinach in rich, well-drained soil with a pH of 6.5 to 7.0, spacing plants 12 inches apart.
- Add a few inches of aged compost or other rich organic matter to your native soil to kickstart the growth season.
- To maintain stable moisture levels, check the soil’s moisture content frequently, or think about using a soaker hose. Water-soluble plant food should be fed regularly to promote quick and tender leaf formation.
- When spinach leaves are big enough to eat, harvest them beginning with the outermost ones.
How To Saute Spinach
If you’re wondering how to retain the flavour of your spinach, especially when you intend to leave it for a long time, the answer is to sauté it.
To create this dish for sautéed spinach, you’ll need:
- Fresh spinach
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Juice from fresh lemons
- Salt and pepper
Now, here’s how to go about the sautéing process:
In a big skillet, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for approximately 30 seconds, or until fragrant. Next, add the spinach and salt, and simmer, stirring, for one to two minutes, or until the spinach is barely wilted.
After taking the skillet off the burner, squeeze some lemon over the greens and stir. Next, add salt and pepper to taste.
There, your sautéed spinach is ready!
How To Freeze Spinach
Wash the spinach leaves to begin the freezing process. Triple-rinsing removes all dirt from leaves by dipping them into three different batches of fresh water. Once the leaves are clean, cut off the stems as needed. Cut larger leaves into bits the size of silver dollars, which are about one to two inches across.
Blanch spinach leaves in steam or boiling water for two minutes, then soak them for the same length of time in ice water. The water turns green when you blanch leaves in boiling water.
Steam-blanch spinach leaves by setting them in a steamer basket that maintains the leaves above boiling water to preserve as much nutritional value as possible. For two minutes, steam. When spinach is blanched in boiling water, not a lot of nutrients or minerals are lost. Your choice and convenience ultimately determine which approach you take.
Spin-dry the spinach in a salad spinner or pat it dry with a thick towel after extracting it from the ice water. Depending on the size of portions you want, stuff one to two cups of leaves into each freezer bag. When frozen food is exposed to air, it can cause a freezer burn, which can ruin the flavour of spinach.
Before sealing bags, try using a straw to remove any extra air surrounding the leaves. Put bags that are sealed in the freezer. Spinach leaves function incredibly well with vacuum sealing devices.
How To Harvest Spinach
Spinach can be harvested in a variety of ways. Here are three approaches to consider:
Through The Leaf
You can opt to gather smaller, immature leaves or larger, mature leaves, depending on your needs. You can either take individual leaves from each plant, working your way around the centre, or you can just take the outermost and oldest leaves.
Simply locate the leaves you wish to gather, pick them up with one hand, and use the other to cut the stem. It is that easy.
Through The Bunch
One way to harvest spinach in large quantities is to use a technique known as clear-cutting, or picking spinach by the bunch.
Just take as many leaves from a single plant as you can hold in one hand, then cut through the stems with a serrated knife, being careful to cut above the crown, which is the point where all the stems converge.
Through the Plant
A stout centre stalk with flower buds emerging from the tips of the regrowing leaves indicates that the spinach is about to “bolt,” or set seed. You can now begin harvesting each spinach plant individually. Cut the plants below the crown with a knife, or remove them by hand.
When spinach is well grown, it produces large quantities of soft, flavorful leaves that can be eaten raw in salads or cooked gently when they become larger.
Since the leaves are so full of iron, vitamins, and other minerals, as well as antioxidants, it is better to eat them fresh for optimal benefits. Baby spinach leaves have a mild flavour and a soft, juicy texture that makes them especially delightful when eaten raw.