Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Perpetual Spinach

One of the great things about gardening is that each year you discover something new. One of my discoveries last year was Perpetual Spinach.

Perpetual Spinach (Beta vulgaris) is a type of Silverbeet or Swiss Chard. Its taste is milder than Silverbeet and very similar to English spinach. It is a perennial. 

I planted this last summer. It has been picked so heavily that the leaves miniturised but you can see that it is returning to full size. I should be able to continue to harvest from this plant for throughout summer. As silver beet it is tough and easy to grow and doesn't bolt.

If you pick it heavily it will need to be fed with liquid fertiliser. I give this plant some fish emulsion every month as we eat from it almost everyday. Perpetual Spinach seedlings are vulnerable to birds and slugs. I solve this problem by using physical barriers such as upturned waste paper baskets.

Best of all Perpetual Spinach is good for you and is high in vitamins and minerals. It is great with eggs, in curries or in spinach and ricotta pie.  

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