Malabar Spinach (110 Days)
The Malabar Spinach offers large, meaty leaves that are remarkably spinach-like in flavor. Deep red stems of this vine provide a beautiful back drop in the garden. In fact, Basella Rubra, this plant, is used very effectively in the agricultural display at Epcot center.
Perennial: Zone 10 and above
Germination: 14-21 days, scarifying or soaking seeds overnight aids germination
Germination Temperature: Optimum soil temperatures 65-75ºF
Seed Sowing Depth: 1/2" deep
Sowing Indoors: 4-6 weeks before the last frost. Provide 65-75ºF soil temperature. Sow 2-3 seeds per cell/pot. Transplant after last frost,12" apart.
Sowing Outdoors: Zone 7 and above. Sow after the last frost when soil temperature reach 70ºF. Sow a few seeds every 12" apart.
Harvest: Pick leaves and use them like spinach
Tips: Plant Malabar Spinach in fertile soil, amended with compost or well rotted manure and keep well watered. Malabar Spinach loves the heat but requires constant moisture (mulch well) and 80ºF plus for superb growth. Supply a trellis for this climbing vine.