Should I Bother Trying to Grow Spinach?

alrightypewriter(9b)September 24, 2009

This is only my second season gardening so I'm still trying to learn the ropes. For fall I'm growing everything from seed. I've planted 8 types of veggies and all but 1 have germinated and sprouted, the bloomsdale spinach. It's still hot in California so I directly sowed them into the container I plan on growing them in indoors. 3 weeks later, nothing. I then tried the paper towel method. Again, nothing. Lastly, I tried the paper towel method in the refrigerator and the seeds remain dormant. Rather than continue to waste seeds, should I even bother trying to grow spinach in Los Angeles? Even in winter, there will still be warm or even hot days. It just doesn't get cold enough here. Anyone from a zone 9 have success with germinating and growing spinach seeds?

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yiorges-z5il

try "New Zealand Spinach" Tetragonia tetragonioides
its not a "true" spinach but has the same taist, texture, AND it is heat & drought tollerent

    Bookmark   September 25, 2009 at 9:21AM
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calistoga_al

Roll the seeds between two sheets of #40 sandpaper to scare the seed coat, then soak over night before planting. Al

    Bookmark   September 25, 2009 at 9:23AM
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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

My experience in Phoenix was, as yiorges try "New Zealand Spinach" Tetragonia tetragonioide and as calistoga suggested sandpaper. I would line the inside of a jar with sandpaper, allow the jar to roll around in the trunk of the car for several days of stop and go driving, then soak.

On forums people often speak of soaking overnight. I might soak some seeds longer; until I saw swelling or until at least one seed showed a hint of roots to come.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2009 at 10:20AM
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alrightypewriter(9b)

Thanks for all the help everyone. I know all about stop and go traffic so I'll give the sandpaper thing a try. Will also try soaking overnight and if all else fails, go with NZ spinach instead.

Thanks!

    Bookmark   September 25, 2009 at 7:35PM
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gemfire(z9/10 AZ)

I planted Burpees Double Choice Hybrid spinach last week and its just starting to come up. We're still a little warm here but are down in the high 80's this week. I also planted a mixture of lettuce seeds (also just starting to come up) and some super sugar snap peas (also coming up). I've planted brocolli in small paper cups and have them about an inch tall under my grow light with a small fan. Will plant them out when they get a little bigger. I'm in Mesa, Arizona so never know what the weather will do from here out. We might keep the cool 80's or go back up. I have a raised bed with pcv pipe over it so can throw up some plastic if we get a frost this winter but am hoping to have some fresh greens. Still planning on putting in some chives and garlic next weekend. I say go ahead and put the seed out where you want them to grow and water them well daily.

Gemfire

    Bookmark   October 5, 2009 at 8:30PM
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queenofthemountain - SoCal 9b

I am also Zone 9 LA. I planted spinach last weekend and it came up a couple of days ago. If you tried all those methods and no seeds germinated, I have to wonder if the seed is viable.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2009 at 12:37AM
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dicot

It's all about temperature. Now that we've dropped here in LA, it's perfect spinach germinating weather. But I never bother anymore because we inevitably get a winter spell of 85+ that wilts the whole crop and I didn't like the NZ stuff. And then there's the issue of heads becoming earwig homes. Maybe if I had a good north facing exposure that was relatively bug-free, but no. Definitely not my favorite LA crop.

I just overplant beets and eat the young leaves instead and focus on lettuce, cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower. And edible flowers, which we can grow lots of, especially my favorite winter addition - pineapple sage.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2009 at 5:28AM
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