9 hours ago
Here’s the next of our 10 biggest lessons from the 2018 growing season... . Lesson #8 - Starting Spinach in the Heat of Summer . Most people in our area plant spinach in the early spring, harvest it until it bolts, then wait a whole year to grow it again. We could extend this harvest window a little by planting a few successions of spinach in spring, but we are interested in stretching this even further, so we have been experimenting with ways to grow it later in the summer. . Since spinach seed prefers cool temperatures for optimum germination, this is the major challenge when planting in during warmer months. There is no cool soil to be found in mid summer. . To get around the germination problem this year, I tried starting spinach as transplants. I started multiple seeds in each soil block to help with efficiency and let them germinate for 5 days in one of our refrigerators. The germination rates were perfect! Once hardened off, the clumps of baby spinach plants were transplanted out into the field. More experimentation is needed to refine the spacing, but we will definitely be repeating this on account of the success this season. . For more photos and specific details about this process, check out the new post in our online Classroom. Just type “spinach” in the Classroom search bar and click on the first post that pops up for you. . Join our growing community by following @vegetableacademy.