Spinach, a cool, hardy leaf, is a popular plant in India, widely used in traditional cooking. Being a super green vegetable, it curbs appetite, boosts hydration, prevents anaemia, and maintains osteoporosis and eye health while strengthening the immunity system.
Planting and growing this nutritious crop is quite approachable in India. Provided you must have best quality farming tractors and implements like Landforce rotavator, cultivator, plough, and so on to gain sustainable yield.
Tips to Plant, Grow & Harvest Spinach
Here are a few tips to consider while planting, growing and harvesting the next seasonal spinach plants.
- Soil Requirement for Spinach Cultivation
Spinach is ideal for growing on sandy loam and alluvial soil with good drainage properties. However, one should avoid highly acidic soils that are vulnerable to accumulating a lot of water. The ph range between 6 to 7 is ideal for spinach cultivation.
- Planting of Spinach
Make sure the soil is prepared a week before planting. Mix the soil with compost. You can prepare the soil either in later summer or early fall so that spinach can grow in mild winters. Spinach can tolerate full sunlight and light shade.
What is the ideal time to Plant Spinach?
For a fall crop, mid-August, when the soil is no warmer than 70°F, is suitable for re-sowing. However, spinach needs 6 weeks of cold weather from seeding to harvest stage, so seeds are sown directly into the soil as soon as the soil hits a temperature of 40°F. After that, covering the soil with black polythene or plastic helps it warm up much better.
Here’s how to plant the Spinach plants:
- Make sure you sow seeds half an inch deep every 2 inches and cover them with half an inch of soil for better germination.
- Additionally, create rows at a distance of 12-18 inches.
- During early spring, sow at regular intervals for a few weeks to get a quality harvest.
Rotavator and plough can help prepare the soil prior to planting. These implements can help break clods and mix the nutrients in soil evenly which will provide great planting and germination. So before you start enquiring about the Sonalika rotavator price or so, let’s move to other factors.
- Irrigation for Spinach
The first irrigation is done immediately after the sowing process. During summertime, provide irrigation at a gap of 4-6 days. However, during winter, supply irrigation at a gap of 10-12 days. Avoid overwatering as this can reduce leaves quality and invite diseases and illnesses.
- Fertiliser Schedule for Spinach Farming
For growing high-yielding spinach varieties, apply the following materials:
- 100 quintals of well-rotted cow dung.
- 35 kg Nitrogen (as Urea@75 kg)/acre.
- 12 kg Phosphorus (as Superphosphate@75 kg)/acre.
Before sowing, apply a full amount of well-rotted cow dung and half nitrogen with phosphorus.
- Harvesting of Spinach
Spinach plants are ready to harvest within 45-60 days from the day of sowing. However, the actual harvesting time can vary depending on your growing variety, soil type, weather conditions and more.
- Post Harvesting of Spinach
Spinach leaves are good to store for up to a week. Moreover, make sure to store unwashed yet fresh spinach. And don’t wash it until it’s ready to use. To absorb moisture left during the harvesting process, use a paper towel or a normal towel to dab the water out. Since spinach has a shorter shelf life, put them in a freezer to preserve them.
Tips for Effective Harvesting
- From each plant, harvest a few outer leaves to give inner leaves more time to develop.
- Once the leaves reach the desired size, harvest the whole plant by cutting the stem at the base.
- Don’t wait for larger leaves to begin harvesting, as bitterness rises quickly after maturity. Once you see leaves are matured, harvest them immediately.
- Stay cautious of sunlight! Warmer seasonal temperatures with daylight exceeding 14 hours or more might make these mineral-rich plants bolt. Where large stalks with narrower leaves and buds/flowers/seeds will form, turning leaves bitter.
Frequently Asked Questions on Spinach Cultivation
- How often should you water Spinach?
Ans. Almost 1” irrigation per week is suitable for spinach growth. Reduce that to half an inch when summer is around to get quality yield.
- What is the best time to plant spinach?
Ans. Spinach is good to sow throughout the year. During the winter season, the ideal planting months are September to October. And for the spring season, mid-February to April are ideal months for planting.
- Average profit from spinach cultivation?
Ans. Growers can earn an average of Rs 75,000/month from one acre.
- Which are popular spinach-producing states in India?
Ans. Maharashtra, Gujarat, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Telangana, Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh are leading producers of spinach in India.