‘Do it now’ Monty Don shares how to sow winter spinach in September

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Spinach is a nutritious and delicious plant that’s fairly easy to grow for those who have the right conditions. The plant can be enjoyed in a plethora of dishes and can be harvested all year round. On the latest episode of Gardeners’ World, Monty Don shared how to sow spinach seeds for harvests “right through until spring”.

The 67-year-old was sowing the spinach seeds into a bed that had carrots in it earlier in the year.

He added compost into the bed before sowing the spinach seeds.

Monty warned that those who want to sow spinach seeds need to “do it now”.

He said: “Now I have to say that if you too want to sow spinach, do it now.

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“We’re running very close to the end of the window when it’s viable.

“We’ll be harvesting this roundabout early November and because I’m sowing a winter spinach, they will last through winter.”

Monty used a board to access the middle of the bed to space the spinach seeds out.

Before placing the seeds into the bed, Monty created a drill in the bed using his hand.

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He continued: “They’re quite big seeds and these are fairly large plants so you can space them out up to six inches apart.

“I will just cover the seeds over. I don’t need to water them in because we have that downpour.

“If it doesn’t rain for a week I will water them and I will make sure they stay moist until they start to appear.

“But once it’s growing, there’s not much you need to do other than to weed but with any luck, we’ll start picking them in November and be able to continue harvesting them right through until spring.”

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Winter spinach likes a sunny position while summer varieties need shade. Winter spinach can be sown in August and September.

The plant can then be harvested from October though to March before more seeds are sown.

For those living in particularly cold areas of the UK, the plant may need protection from October onwards.

To prevent the leaves tasting bitter, ensure the soil is rich by digging in organic matter like compost before sowing the seeds.

One of the most common problems with sowing spinach seeds is birds, especially pigeons, eating seeds.

Cover the plants with netting or fleece to stop birds from eating the seeds.

Scarecrows and bird-scaring statues can also be used to scare birds away from seeds.

Gardeners’ World is available to stream on BBC iPlayer.

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