I definitely recommend growing some hydroponic spinach. Spinach is high in iron and other nutrients that are beneficial to many aspects of your health. Like other leafy greens, it’s a cool weather crop that grows great hydroponically.
Here’s your guide to growing hydroponic spinach!
How To Germinate Hydroponic Spinach Seeds
I prefer to use rapid rooter plugs to germinate my spinach seeds. It’s best to sow a few seeds into each plug to increase the chances of getting a successful seedling. Germination for spinach takes longer than leafy greens like lettuce, sometimes taking up to three weeks.
Spinach seeds will germinate in temperatures from 45-75 degrees. When germinating, typically higher the temperatures the quicker the germination but with less of a success rate. After the seedlings rise above the starter cube, that’s when you pinch the heads off of the multiples, leaving the healthiest seedling.
Make sure to pinch and not pull, or you may disrupt the root system of the seedling you’re going to keep.
When I grow hydroponic spinach I typically use ebb and flow and NFT systems.
What Is The Best Temperature For Hydroponic Spinach?
Spinach is a cool weather crop even more so than lettuce and grows best at temperatures between 45 and 65 degrees.
If your hydroponic spinach gets above the 70-degree range it will bolt, which means it starts to go into the flowering phase of its life cycle and will become bitter tasting.
Spacing Requirements For Hydroponic Spinach
Typically I space my hydroponic spinach about4-5 inches apart. I don’t allow my spinach to grow to full size so less space is needed to grow.
Spinach has shallow root systems and doesn’t require a deep grow bed.
How Much Light For Hydroponic Spinach Production?
Spinach is one of those plants that doesn’t require a long light duration or intense amount of light to grow. Hydroponic spinach should get between 10 and 14 hours of light per day.
You have several lighting options when it comes to growing hydroponic spinach since it’s lighting requirements are minimal. Fluorescent lighting is a great choice due to the minimal initial investment, low power consumption, low heat production.
Recommended pH For Hydroponic Spinach
The recommended pH level for hydroponic spinach is 5.5-6.5.
Hydroponic Spinach Nutrient Requirements
Spinach requires an n-p-k ratio geared towards vegetative growth, high in nitrogen. Since we eat spinach during its vegetative cycle, you can use the same nutrient regimen up until harvest.
Hydroponic spinach does well with nutrients higher in nitrogen and phosphorus. I personally use Dyna-Gro Foliage Pro nutrients for growing my hydroponic spinach.
Days Until Hydroponic Spinach Harvest
Spinach typically reaches full maturity in 30 to 45 days. With spinach, you have the option of harvesting the whole plant or small amounts at a time, similar to cut and come again lettuce harvesting.
I prefer to harvest my hydroponic spinach before full maturity. I think the leaves are more tender and have a better taste.
Spinach is an easy to grow leafy vegetable that can be grown and harvested before the summer crops are ready to be planted.