What Is Malabar Spinach?
Malabar spinach (also known as “spineless” or “spinach”) is a type of leafy green plant native to tropical regions around the world. It grows best in cool climates with full sun exposure, but it will grow well even in areas where there isn’t much sunlight. The leaves are long and thin, which makes them ideal for eating raw, steamed or cooked.
Malabar spinach is commonly used in soups, stews and salads. It’s also eaten fresh as a vegetable.
Some recipes call for cooking the spinach before serving it, while others use it straight from the pot. The leaves can be found at most grocery stores, although they’re not cheap! You’ll have to pay $2-$4 per pound if you want to buy your own leafy greens.
How To Grow Malabar Spinach Indoors?
Growing malabar spinach indoors is pretty easy. You just need to follow some basic guidelines. Here are the steps you’ll take:
1) Choose a location for your indoor garden.
Make sure it gets enough light so that your plants get their energy from the sun, rather than from artificial lights like fluorescent tubes or halogen bulbs. Also, your leaves won’t get “sunburned” if you grow them in dimmer areas.
Finally, always keep your plants away from air conditioners and radiators.
2) Fill a pot with potting soil.
Place a seedling (or a seed, if you want to grow your own plants from seeds) into the middle of the pot. Cover it with more potting soil, ensuring that the base of the plant is buried deep enough.
3) Place the pot in a location where it can get enough sunlight every day.
If you want, you can place the pot on a tray to collect excess water (make sure the tray is shallow enough so that the base of the plant is still buried).
4) Wait about a month before you start harvesting your leafy greens.
When you do harvest them, only take a few leaves from each stem at any given time. This will ensure that the plant continues to grow back.
5) You can keep your malabar spinach alive for about 4-6 months, if you take care of it properly.
What Temperature Does Malabar Spinach Like?
The best temperature for malabar spinach is between 60 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. If you live in a colder climate, you might benefit from using a heating cable to give your leaves the warmth they need. If the temperature drops below 60 degrees, the leaves will start to turn black and wither.
What Do I Need To Know About Lighting?
Your malabar spinach needs at least six hours of sunlight every day. If you don’t live in a location where it gets sunlight for more than six hours, you can use artificial lighting to “bring it up”. Fluorescent tubes work well.
How Often Do I Water My Plants?
You should water your malabar spinach plants whenever the soil starts to dry out. Don’t give them too much water, though! Use just enough water to keep the soil moist, but not wet. Remember: you want your plant’s roots to be able to breathe!
What Should I Feed My Plants?
Just like most plants, malabar spinach prefers organic fertilizer to synthetic ones. You can use a mixture of compost, rotted manure and mulch to give your plants a nice, healthy treat.
What Should I Do When My Plants Start To Reproduce?
If you planted a seed, it should start growing a few weeks after you first planted it. Once the seedling has developed two leaves, you can start harvesting the stem. Cut the stem off just below the last pair of leaves.
If you planted a seedling, it should be ready for harvest a month after you first planted the stem. Cut it off just below the last pair of leaves, like you would with a seedling.
What Should I Do If A Disease Attacks My Plants?
If your plant gets infected with disease, you can try using an organic fungicide to get rid of it.
Sources & references used in this article:
… and morphological properties of chitosan obtained from prawn shell: Evaluation of potential for irradiated chitosan as plant growth stimulator for Malabar spinach by MM Rahman, S Kabir, TU Rashid, B Nesa… – Radiation Physics and …, 2013 – Elsevier
Effect of gamma irradiated sodium alginate on Malabar spinach (Basella alba) and spinach (Spinacia oleracea) as plant growth promoter by F Parvin, F Yeasmin, JMM Islam… – American Academic & …, 2013 – search.proquest.com
In vivo tracing of organochloride and organophosphorus pesticides in different organs of hydroponically grown malabar spinach (Basella alba L.) by J Qiu, G Chen, J Xu, E Luo, Y Liu, F Wang… – Journal of hazardous …, 2016 – Elsevier