Spinach Bloomsdale 200 Seeds
• Site. Spinach grows best in sun to partial shade. Sow spinach in light soil that is well drained. Prepare planting beds by working aged compost to a depth of 4 inches; remove clumps of soil or organic matter before sowing. Add blood meal–rich in nitrogen–to the planting bed to promote rapid growth. Spinach grows more quickly in sandy soil and more slowly in clay soil. A soil pH range of 6.0-7.0 is optimal. Mulch plants to cool the soil in warm regions.
• Winter crop. Grow spinach through the winter under a cold frame, row covers over hoops, or straw mulch. Sow seed 6 weeks before the first expected frost so that plants get up to size before frost or freezing temperatures come. Sow winter crops in raised beds to ensure quick drainage. Choose hardy varieties for winter growing. In warm winter regions, grow spinach through the winter without cover.
• Feeding. Spinach is a heavy feeder. Feed spinach with compost tea, manure tea, or fish emulsion when plants have four true leaves. Mix 1 tablespoon of fish emulsion and 2 tablespoons of kelp extract per gallon of water; use about one cup per one-foot of row on a weekly basis until plants are about 4 inches tall; then feed two more times before harvest.
• Water. Spinach grows best in evenly moist but not wet soil. Water spinach every other day in light sandy soil; water once a week in heavy soil. Consistent moisture will ensure rapid growth and prevent bolting. In warm regions, mulch around plants to slow soil moisture evaporation. Where soil is slow draining, plant spinach in raised beds.
• Bolting. Spinach will bolt (form flowering stalks and go to seed) in warm temperatures and increasing day length. If a central stalk starts to form but temperatures have not started to warm, cut the whole plant back to just above the soil line and let the leaves regrow.
• Leaf miners and other pests. Leaf miner larvae tunnel through spinach leaves and leave a trail of light-colored squiggles or blotches. Pick and destroy this foliage; keep the garden clean of leaf debris. Protect young spinach plants from leaf miners, flea beetles, and aphids with row covers as long as temperatures are moderate. Row covers can be removed in chilly weather. After harvest, turn the planting bed to destroy larvae in the soil.
• Succession cropping. Sow spinach every 10 to 14 days to ensure a steady harvest of tender young leaves; harvest of one plant extends over two to six weeks. Spinach is ready for harvest in about 40 days.
• Harvest. Start harvesting spinach when plants have at least six leaves that are 3 inches long. Pick the outside leaves first and the inner leaves will continue to grow or cut the entire plant just below the soil level with a garden knife. Cutting outside leaves will extend harvests, particularly with fall and winter crops. Baby spinach leaves are tender and tasty.
The large leaves of this variety are thick, dark green.
They have a crinkled texture. Slow to bolt.