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Old March 31, 2017   #1
greenthumbomaha
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Default Bleach treatement for Malbar Spinach

Do you think a 1/10 solution would be appropriate in this situation -

I soaked 6 seeds overnight in sink water and planted in potting soil on a heat mat.

In the soak, two seeds were fused and had grey yuck around them.

Like a genius I planted them all.

These are the only two that germinated, as yet, but they have yuck on the seed head/seat coat, can't tell without my reading glasses. Still in the bend stage.

Should I drench the soil or just the seed head?

Any ideas appreciated. Few seeds left to start over. Should I pre soak those in bleach, how long?

- Lisa
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Old April 3, 2017   #2
Starlight
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I don't know about bleach on your spinach seeds, but you might give the ones you have up a drench with some hydrogen peroxide and water, heavier on the hydrogen peroxide.

If you soak the new seed, I would still soak in hydrogen peroxide with some water and rinse a couple of times before sowing and I always moisten my soil when I plant seeds with some of the same mixture.

Usually spinach germinates fairly quickly. I wonder if you even need to soak them. Could be the grey yuck is from the seed coat getting to wet and starting to rot.
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Old April 4, 2017   #3
greenthumbomaha
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I actually did soak my regular spinach seeds and they germinated fast and at a good percentage. Just planted them out yesterday. Malabar isn't a true spinach. This green actually prefers to grow in hot 90 degree weather, and it grows as a large vine. It supposedly tastes like cooked spinach. This is my first time growing it. I'm wondering how I can keep the squirrels from getting to it so I can give it a try.

When I pulled the seeds out from their extended soak they were very limp. I was sure I had ruined them. Somehow 4 germinated. The seeds actually lost that yucky coating when they spent time under the lights. They must have really dried out the seed head though. One is good and an inch tall, but the rest were small and weighed down by the seed coats. They were so hard I soaked spit crushed etc. Wished I had left them alone!

- Lisa

Last edited by greenthumbomaha; April 4, 2017 at 12:06 AM.
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Old April 4, 2017   #4
Starlight
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Glad you at least got a couple of seedlings. I have seed of the malabar, but so far haven't tried to grow it. Not knowing how it will taste, figure I better save my space for something I do know tastes good. let us know how you liked it. : )
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Old April 4, 2017   #5
greenthumbomaha
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Go ahead and try it! It grows upright like a pea, pretty too if you have the red vine type. It won't take up much room at all. Even just one seed as a trial. (It probably will be a must grow if you can get the darn thing started).

- Lisa
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Old April 5, 2017   #6
Starlight
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Ok, you talked me into it. LOL : ) Now to find my seeds. How do you plan on eating yours? That is if you are going to try and eat it.
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Old April 5, 2017   #7
greenthumbomaha
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Good! Why not, enjoy what you can when you can! Lets compare notes. Its kind of an unusual plant to grow.

I have one good one, 4 of 6 germinated. I didn't do a good job of getting the hard seed coat off the rest - we shall see if anything grows from the stem If the surviving one produces, you bet its for eating. Do you know something I didn't about malabar? Should this be in the mj discussion?

- Lisa

Last edited by greenthumbomaha; April 5, 2017 at 09:28 PM.
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Old April 10, 2017   #8
NewWestGardener
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Have you tried Malabar spinach? What does it taste like? I bought a plant a few years ago but it got lost in the garden somewhere.
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Old April 10, 2017   #9
greenthumbomaha
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Not too popular a thread, is it?

I don't think many people know its a warm season grower. I haven't tried it yet. Most gardeners in my area are first doing yard clean up and soon it will be too hot for true spinach.

Please chime in, spinach people. What other varieties of spinach have you tried, yay or nay.

- Lisa
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Old April 10, 2017   #10
NewWestGardener
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Most people are not familiar with this plant or not having the climate for it.
I grew spinach before, lots of problems with aphids. I find Swiss chards grow bigger, and trouble free, self-seeding, so I grow the chards instead .
On a side note, I also collected a ton of nettle shoots last weekend, washed and quickly blanched in boiling water to get rid of the stings, they taste just like spinach as well. There are fields and fields of them growing wild where I live and I've never seen people picking them. I am not sure if food banks are comfortable accepting them. The bugs will quickly descend on them so the harvestable window is pretty short.
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Old April 14, 2017   #11
oakley
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This is in 'diseases and pests' so i did not bother to look. Nor do i bleach seeds or do
anything other than start them in trays as i have not the time growing from seed so
many varieties.

I grow it. Short season here but does carry on in all the July-August heat. One of the
few vining plants and fast growers i start in those peat pellets. Gives me a head start
with things like nasturtium, summer squash, etc. The delicate transplants.

Not spinach but really good and 'meaty'. I do keep salads going all summer using shade
frames.
Other good ones i'm growing this year...
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Old April 14, 2017   #12
carolyn137
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I've grown both the red and green malabar ones,said to taste just like spinach, but not for me at all, so I only grew both once.

I don't recall doing anything to the seeds except for sowing them outside and early, as one would for true spinach.

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Old April 14, 2017   #13
oakley
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No, nothing like spinach at all and i was surprised that it even has that 'name'
connection.
I do find a mid-end July heat sometimes looking for greens for mixed greens and it
goes into a hot pan, (rolled and slices very thin), With other edible green things, tossed
then lots of lemon and garlic.
By that time i'm way into the tomatoes, so greens take a back seat with the beans...

It does not mind heat so great for very hot climates. Sort of a cross between a very
thick meaty spinach variety and okra. (but not either one at all )

Not unlike the Tromboncino squash. (Nothing like good summer squash), but is vining and
has less diseases....just needs a different cooking method and not called 'summer squash'. Not a replacement at all. Almost needs to be baked and stuffed like an eggplant. Still trying to like that one....
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Old April 18, 2017   #14
maxjohnson
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I have a pointy type of malabar spinach that grows as volunteer now in my garden. It has much more tender leaves than the regular type and better eating. I rarely ever seen any seeds seller selling this variety either.

With malabar spinach, the leaves can get gigantic is very nitrogen rich soil.
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Old March 26, 2018   #15
greenthumbomaha
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I almost forgot to start Malbar seeds for this summer.

My seedlings got lost in the garden last year, so I am trying again. No peroxide this year. I just finished on over night soak and will germinate with the baggie paper towel method instead. Stays warm over the dvd player with some rags on top. I saw on you tube to refresh the paper towel every two days to avoid mold. Fingers crossed on healthy clean germination with this method..

- Lisa
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