How to Grow Malabar Climbing Spinach Flowers
Annual / Perennial, Basella Rubra
Looking for a climbing ornamental flower that is also edible!? Climbing Spinach
is for you. This climber will reward you, growing up to 8-10 feet in a single
season. As it grows, you can pick young, tender leaves for salads. The leaves
have a pepper-lemon flavor.
The plant has dark green leaves with burgundy vines and flower buds. Make
sure to provide a support for this plant to climb on. It will look great,
climbing up a trellis or along a fence.
The plants produce small, white flowers, from summer into fall. The spent
blooms will produce berries, in areas with a longer growing period.
Most gardeners will grow Malabar Climbing Spinach as a annual. In warmer
weather, it can be grown as a perennial.
While Malabar Climbing Spinach is not a true spinach, it tastes great in
salads, soups and stir-fries.
Here's how to grow Climbing Spinach plants from seeds:
For an early start, sow seeds indoors 4 to 6 weeks before the last frost.
We recommend a heated germination
mat, to increase the speed of germination, and for a higher germination
Keep the soil moist, not wet, after planting.
Germination Tip: Soak seeds overnight, prior to planting.
Seeds can also be directly sowed outdoors after the last frost date for your
Planting Depth: 1/4"
Days to Germination: 10 - 15 days.
Plant Spacing: 10-12" apart.
Plant Height: 8' to 10'.
How to Grow Malabar Climbing Spinach Plants:
Select a growing location that is in full sun, and where there is a trellis
or fence for the vines to climb. It can be planted in a container, and grown
down from a deck,
While the plants like warm weather, choose an area with partial shade in
hotter areas of the country.
The plants need a rich, loose soil to help fuel growth. Mix in plenty of
compost to the planting site. The soil should be able to retain water, but
also be well drained.
Give plants a regular dose of fertilizer, every 3-4 weeks.
Plants grow best in warm, rainy periods. Keep the soil moist. Water plants
during dry spells, and especially in hot weather.
Mulch around plants to keep weeds down, and to retain soil moisture.
If your space, height or width, is limited, trim back plants from time to
Flowers Bloom: Summer through Fall
Insect and Disease:
Insect and disease problems are infrequent. If you are using the edible leaves,
avoid insecticides and fungicides.
Harvesting Spinach Leaves:
You can begin to harvest leaves for the kitchen, as soon as the plant is
established, and the vine is growing well.
Young, tender leaves have the best taste and texture.