Did you know perpetual spinach isn’t even spinach? In fact, it’s actually related to silver beet and is sometimes also called ‘leaf beet’. Though if I had to describe how it tastes, I’d say it tastes similar to spinach but with a slightly milder, more bitter taste.
But the main reasons I think perpetual spinach is a perfect plant to have in the vegetable garden, are because it grows quickly, it doesn’t take up much space, it’s full of vitamins (like its namesake and relative) and it’s very easy care.
You can order your perpetual spinach seedlings from our online shop. Or grab some of our newspaper wrapped seedling bundles next time you’re at your local supermarket, Bunnings or The Warehouse.
If you’re planting members of the brassica family this autumn – like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli etc – your perpetual spinach seedlings could be planted around 20cm apart from each other in the rows in between. Because they don’t take up much space and mature quickly, you’ll have eaten them before your slow-developing brassicas need the room.
Regardless of where you plant them, it pays to mix in some general fertiliser and/or compost into the soil first to give them a good kick start and ensure the soil is well-drained. If you don’t have much space you can easily grow it in pots – just put in some fresh potting mix before planting.
In around four to six weeks the leaves on your perpetual spinach will be large enough to harvest. I recommend picking the outer leaves first, leaving the inner leaves intact so the plant keeps producing.
I like to use the small leaves in salads and use the larger leaves (with a slightly more bitter taste) like I would spinach or silver beet.