ORGANIC SPINACH CULTIVATION
1. Selection of varieties
Spinach for export has a variety that does not turn black after blanching, and has a bright green color. The best variety is widely adaptable, fast-growing, high-yield, with an upright plant shape, thick leaves and green color.
2. Planting season
The season and sowing period for spinach is determined by the environmental conditions required for the growth and development of spinach and the requirements of production and processing.
a) Overwintering spinach
The most suitable sowing time is early autumn, so that the seedlings have 5-6 leaves before winter, the plants can be safely overwintered and harvested early.
b) Spring spinach
When the ground temperature is 4℃-6℃, after thawing, start sowing, although the spring spinach sowing period is flexible, but it suggested that it should be sown early in time, the most suitable sowing period is early spring.
c) Summer spinach
The summer spinach has shortest growing period. The high temperature could restrict the increasing area of spinach leaf, so the later the sowing, the lower the weight of the single plant, it suggested that the sowing period for summer spinach should be earlier, the suitable sowing period is early summer.
d) Autumn spinach
The temperature starts to fall gradually in the autumn, and it is conducive to the differentiation of leaf primordia, also optimal for the growth of leaf area and leaf weight from seedling to pre-harvest. So, autumn spinach is the heaviest in a year, and has the potential for yield increasing. It suggested that the sowing period is early autumn.
3. Planting techniques
(i) Land preparation
Spinach is not suitable to continuous cropping, and should be planted in rotation with legumes, vegetables, tomatoes, peppers. The soil has good water and fertilizer retention. The based fertilizers should be 60 tons of organic fertilizer per hectare. Before sowing, ploughing soil in the depth of 25cm-30cm, and the length and width of flat beds should be suitable for cultivation management.
The appropriate density for planting spinach is 20cm between rows and 8cm-10cm between plants. To improve seedling emergence, it is suggested that sowing at high temperatures, germination before sowing, and sowing should be covered with about 1.5cm of soil. If the soil is dry, water is needed after sowing.
4. Field management
For overwintering spinach
Pre-winter management is important, loosen the soil can promote root growth, and 5 to 6-leaves spinach could overwinter more safely. The fact that winter spinach growth period is longer, it should be timely topdressing and watering, organic fertilizer for topdressing is 7.5 tons, and leaves enlargement should have enough water.
For autumn spinach
After the emergence of autumn spinach, the temperature is relatively high, so the space between seedlings should be more wider. In addition, the temperature is high in the early growth period of autumn spinach, so it is necessary to take frequent watering with small amount, which ensure water spinach needed and reduce the ground temperature, then promote the growth of seedlings and achieve high yield.
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