2Spinach Composition Botanical Name : Spinacea oleracea L. Origin : Central AsiaFamily : UmbelliferaeChromosome no.: 2n=12CompositionMoisture- 92.1%Vit. C- 28mgP- 21mgProtein- 2.0gVit. A IUFe mgMinerals- 1.7gMg- 84mgThiamine- 0.03mgCa- 73mgOxalic acid- 658mgCHO- 2.9g
3ImportanceNormally consumed as cooked vegetable and sometimes as a salad in company with lettuce and other vegetables.Not commercially grown in India except hilly areas.It ranks next to broccoli in total nutrient concentration among vegetable crops.Rich source of vitamin A, Fe, CaAlso contains appreciable quantity of ascorbic acid, riboflavin and small quantity of thiamine.Ca is unavailable since it unites with oxalic acid to form calcium oxalate.
4On basis of leaf character CultivarsClassificationSmoothSavoyedOn basis of seedsOn basis of leaf characterTwo groups:Prickly seededRound seededTwo groups:Smooth leavedSavoy leavedEarly smooth leaf Virginia Savoy
5Cultivars suitable for growing in Himachal Pradesh 1.Virginia SavoyPrickly seeded cultivar having blistered large dark green leaves with round tips. Plants are upright and vigorous in growth, average yield q/ha2.Long StandingDark green thick leaves triangular in shape with a pointed apex, slow in growth, average yield q/ha
6Plant growth and development Spinach is an annual.Plants are usually dioecioussome monoecious plants may develop rarely in certain cultivars.Dioecious types produces two different kinds of male plants:Extreme males: small with very little vegetative development and tend to bolt quickly.Vegetative males and females: slower to flower and produces considerably more foliage, making them the preferred plants type for commercial cultivation.Eliminate the extreme males from commercial strains by selection.
7Stages of Plant Development 1. Vegetative stage or rosette stageSingle stem with extremely short internodesLeaves may be smooth or savoyed, arise in a whorl around the stem forming a rosette of foliage2. Reproductive stageInitiated by the elongation of stem which breaks apart the rosette and forms a branching flower seed stalk.Spinach is a long day plant with critical day length ranging from hours.The change from vegetative to reproductive growth is conditioned by temperature and is usually accelerated by exposure to cold temperature followed by high temperature.Once the critical photoperiod is reached, spinach will go to seed rapidly with increasing photoperiod and warm temperature.
8SoilSame as beet leaf.This crop is susceptible to injury by high acidityClimateA hardy, cool season crop that does best at temperature of 60-65oF.Withstands hard frost and temperature as low as 20oF, but the growth is depressed below 35oF.The plant is very intolerant of warm temperature above 77oF which in combination with long days causes plants to bolt, quickly destroying market value.Good seed germination at oC (50-60oF) and decreases at higher temperature.It is a long day crop.
11(Thinning is done to maintain the spacing within the rows) Seed Rate37-45 kg/haSoil preparationThe soil should be thoroughly pulverized so as to obtain fine tilth for getting the best cropSpacing30cm X 5-10cm(Thinning is done to maintain the spacing within the rows)
12Manures and fertilizers Recommended doseFYMNP2O5K2 O(q/ha)(Kg/ha)Open pollinated varieties100705030Full dose of farmyard manure, P, K and half N should be applied at the time of sowing.Remaining part of N should be top dressed in 2 equal installments at an interval of one month each.
13Interculture and weed control To keep away the weeds from the field and to loosen the soil for proper aeration, 2-3 hoeings cum weedings are required.IrrigationA pre-sowing irrigation is to be given to help the seeds absorb moisture and germinate properly.The crop requires irrigation at about days interval.
14HarvestingThe crop will be ready for harvest about 4 weeks after sowing.It gives about 3-4 cuttings in the season.Harvesting by hand gave higher yield than mowing.A plant with seed stalk is considered unmarketable.Yield100 q/ha
15Diseases Insects Damping off Leaf spot: spray 0.2% Blitox at 15 days intervalWhite rust:Downy mildew: 0.2% Dithane-M-45InsectsAphids: Spray oxy demeton 0.025% orCatterpiller: Spray or or