Iranian edible spinach with scientific name Spinacia oleracea:
Spinach is an annual and long-day plant that produces a ring of leaves after greening. In this way, they are placed on a level around a short stem with a length of several millimeters close to the soil surface. During the next growth (reproductive), this stem is lengthened and from it other side branches branch from the location of the ring leaves to the main stem. The leaves in different cultivars have different shapes and colors and are ovoid, oval or lance-shaped. The side of the leaves can be completely smooth or jagged. The leaf blade is smooth or wrinkled.
The cultivars that can be found in the domestic market of Iran today with the names of Shahroudi, Rosebland, Mehrgan, Beitigh, Tighdar, Kitan Red, Green Hybrid, Fusillo Italy, Horsan, Virofli Fuslo, Oriental Pride f1, Red Japanese Mustard, Red Ronde, etc. Introduction have became.
How is the water, air and soil suitable for planting spinach?
Spinach is a product of cold regions and grows better in cool climates. In general, spinach responds best to strong sunlight, moderate temperature and humid air. It tolerates frost more than other vegetables.
Some of its cultivars are even resistant to cold up to -7 degrees. Strong and dry winds cause damage to the plant. Spinach grows best in cold climates and is a frost-resistant plant.
Spinach can withstand 4 to 6 degrees below zero. Depending on weather conditions, it takes 6 to 10 weeks for the product to be harvested.
When is the best time to grow Iranian spinach:
Determining the time of cultivation in spinach depends on the cultivation area and its climate in tropical regions in autumn and winter. Cold regions are usually planted in spring. Spinach is a light-loving plant and needs a lot of light to grow. Spinach can be cultivated several times a year due to the short growing season in areas with moderate climates. In areas with mild winters (such as Khuzestan), its growth in winter is excellent. In these areas, cultivation is done in early autumn.
If the weather does not warm up after winter, the seeds can be sown in late winter and the spinach crop can be harvested in early spring. High heat causes the plant to flower and, as a result, give seeds. This causes the taste of the leaves to become spicy, their growth and development to slow down, and after some time they dry up and disappear. Of course, another reason is effective in early flowering of spinach, and that is the duration of lighting. The longer the day (light) increases, the earlier the plant flowers; Because spinach is a long day vegetable. Of course, early flowering of spinach depends on its variety. Some spinach cultivars are more resistant to early flowering than others, while others are very sensitive. As mentioned before, in general, spinach is a perennial plant. Therefore, if the duration of lighting is long during growth, the spinach plant will flower within a few weeks. This is the reason why the seed grown in spring (spring number) flowers earlier than the summer and autumn cultivars that are grown in late summer and early fall. The critical stage of flowering of spinach is in the condition of 12 hours of light. Dryness and high heat also accelerate flowering.
Due to the fact that spinach is a long day plant, its planting should be done in spring or autumn, that is, in short days. Therefore, spinach seeds are planted in areas with mild winters, such as the southern parts of Iran, gradually from mid-autumn to early March. Spring spinach can be planted at the end of winter, for example in March, when the weather is favorable.
In the case of autumn spinach, i.e. a crop that should be harvested in autumn and winter, it should not be planted earlier than the middle of August because there is a high possibility of it flowering during long days. Also, it should not be planted later than the middle of September, because it may not be harvested in time. In the central regions of Iran, many gardeners plant in their gardens in early autumn and harvest during winter.
Spinach in Iran is cultivated in the cold regions of Mashhad, Tabriz and Isfahan, as soon as the weather is favorable. Planting can be done about 5 weeks before the last frost and spring cold. In this case, the planting date is repeated every 7 to 10 days. Another time to plant spinach is late fall. About 7 weeks before the first frost is the right time for this. During the winter, spinach plants are protected from the cold by dry fodder, straw and stubble. The time to harvest this type of spinach is early spring. In subtropical regions, plant growth is from early autumn to late winter.
What are the characteristics of suitable soil for growing spinach?
Spinach grows in a wide range of soils. The best soils are sandy loam soils or alluvial soils with good drainage. This plant is very sensitive to acidic soils and its optimal growth is around 6 to 7 pH. Very light and very heavy soils are not suitable for plant growth. Deep soils with medium texture, containing organic matter and sufficient moisture are very suitable for spinach. Light soils are more suitable for early varieties and winter crops and in general for the production of early crops.
How can spinach seeds be planted?
Manual and mechanized planting of spinach Spinach seeds can be planted in two ways.
One is the palm method which has an irregular growth and the other is the linear method which has a row order. Of course, the linear method is preferred due to the ease of care and crop care. In linear cultivation, seeds are placed in grooves that are one to two centimeters deep. The distance between the cultivation lines is about 30 cm and the distance between two plants on the cultivation lines is 10 to 15 cm.
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