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Growing Spinach Seeds

Spinach is a cool season crop, developing at its best when growth is quick and continuous. Provide full sun, cool nights and plentiful water supply. Spinach prefers well-drained soil with humus content; its culture is similar to that of lettuce.

Sow seed as early in the spring as the ground can be worked, in rows about a foot and a half apart. Seedlings can be thinned to about one foot. Leaves should be ready to harvest in four to five weeks. An additional planting can be made on August first for a second crop.

Good varieties to plant are Melody Hybrid, which is disease-resistant; Avon Hybrid, which is heat-resistant; Bloomsdale Long-Standing, heat-resistant and slow to go to seed.

Insect pests to look for are flea beetles, aphids, and leafhoppers. Control these by using malathion, or a general purpose spray or dust containing malathion, and be sure to follow the manufacturer's directions.

Diseases often occur in plants that are crowded, and an be spread by insects in some cases. General clean cultivation, aphid control, and the planting of resistant varieties is a good idea. The fungus disease downy mildew can be controlled by preparations containing maneb or zineb. The virus yellows can also be a problem, but the general steps mentioned above will help to keep this problem to a minimum.

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Read the next Article: Seed Starting Basics

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Gardening Tip of the Day

  • If your corn crop didn’t produce well last season it could be due to several of these common problems:
    * Seeds were planted too close together and became overcrowded.
    * Plants did not receive enough fertilizer. Corn is a heavy feeder and especially needs nitrogen for optimal development.
    * Crop was not adequately weeded or watered when weather was dry.
    * Weather was too cold before corn could mature. Try using a hybrid corn variety bred for shorter growing seasons.
    * Corn was poorly pollinated. To prevent poor pollination, plant corn in blocks instead of long rows.
    * Crop was not rotated or stalks were left in the garden over the winter. Rotate corn to a different place every year and remove old foliage to prevent disease and insect problems. Plant a cover crop to renew soil where corn was growing.