Heirlooms forum: Malabar Spinach

Page 1 of 3 • 1 2 3
Views: 3843, Replies: 52 » Jump to the end
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Jul 8, 2010 11:50 AM CST

Moderator

Malabar spinach, Ceylon spinach, or Indian spinach, Basella alba and/or B. rubra

Malabar spinach grows well in hot climates. Plant seeds when weather warms up, or it will reseed itself and sprouts emerge when temps warm; mine started sprouting in June from self-sown seeds.

You will probably want to trellis your plants because they are a vine. There are two varieties, Basella alba which has green stems and white flowers that turn to deep purple fruits & Basella rubra has deep magenta stems and pink flowers, turning to dark magenta fruits.

PICTURED: Basella rubra leaf & flower


The leaves and flowers are edible. The texture is more meaty than spinach but the flavor is similar.





May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Jul 8, 2010 12:06 PM CST

Moderator

Once the fruits mature with dark purple fruits they can be harvested. When you handle them, keep in mind that the color will come off into your hands.

*The fruits make a nice dye in frostings or other foods*

Wash the juicy coating and leave the seeds to dry completely in a sunny location.

You can leave the fruit whole and let dry in a sunny place but if you don't dry completely the seeds will turn bad.

I've done it both ways. Just set them in a tray on a shelf under the porch where they had morning sun. You can also just dry inside on a paper plate in a airy place. It worked easily, either way.

PICTURED: Malabar fruits ready to pick


May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Ontario, Canada (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Container Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids
Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Canadian Roses Seed Starter Tropicals Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Steven
Aug 31, 2010 8:47 PM CST
I grew this last year and it was delicious!
Name: Debra joeswife
Derby,Kansas (Zone 6b)
Image
joeswife
Sep 2, 2010 11:06 AM CST
ME TOO! he first time I saw it was when I was visiting a friend in town and he had an archway full of it. Mine last year did well, but it really filled up the area and this year I had plans for native wild flowers in the same spot. I still have seeds from it, tho.
Your Mind is a Garden, Your Thoughts are the Seeds, You can grow Flowers or You can grow Weeds.
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Sep 2, 2010 1:30 PM CST

Moderator

It makes plenty of seeds! I think it's attractive as well as being a nice edible! It grew again this year from seeds that I let fall last year.... although I collected most of them!



I will probably collect seeds again this year.

Thumb of 2010-09-02/wildflowers/a99876
May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Critter (Jill)
MD (Zone 6b)
We're all learners, doers, teachers
Charter ATP Member Region: Maryland Bulbs Amaryllis Tropicals Cottage Gardener
Critters Allowed Birds Butterflies Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bee Lover
Image
critterologist
Nov 4, 2010 12:08 AM CST
I saw you had seeds from this plant for the Hog Wild swap and found this link.. thank you! I have a couple of B. rubra plants producing seeds like crazy, and I wasn't sure if I needed to ferment the seeds or anything after harvesting. Drying will be easy to do! Now I should be able to add them to my list for the swap if/when yours run out. :-)
I'm learning to dance in the rain. Thank you, Sally & Chris.
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Nov 4, 2010 7:22 AM CST

Moderator

Great critter!! they dry pretty quickly if you clean them.. it's a bit messy but not too bad. Rolling my eyes.

I told Tuinkabouter that I would send her any extras that I might have too.
May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Phillip
brayton tn. (Zone 7b)
Region: United States of America Canning and food preservation Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
homeshow
Feb 5, 2012 4:11 AM CST
Anyone have extra,seeds? Or a good source? We want them for us and as a supplemental feed for our milk goats.
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Feb 5, 2012 7:54 AM CST

Moderator

Hi Phillip,

Let me check and see if I have any left. If I do I'll be happy to share them with you.
May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Leann
Orlando, Florida (Zone 9b)
Image
DarkRhapsody
Aug 11, 2013 7:34 PM CST
I got mine at a farmers market, but the lady that sold them to me said she only gets her seeds from Southern Seed Exchange. They're the PERFECT green for Central Florida because they love heat and humidity.
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Aug 12, 2013 10:03 AM CST

Moderator

Hi Dark, Welcome! Southern Seed Exchange, is that Southern Exposure? I've used them and like them. They only sell open pollinated seeds,
No GMO's. Thumbs up If you look up at the top of your page, you will see we have a place to review seed/plant companies that other members like and use, it's under "Recommendations".

I didn't grow any this year; I usually get a few volunteers but nada!
May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Critter (Jill)
MD (Zone 6b)
We're all learners, doers, teachers
Charter ATP Member Region: Maryland Bulbs Amaryllis Tropicals Cottage Gardener
Critters Allowed Birds Butterflies Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bee Lover
Image
critterologist
Sep 1, 2013 8:35 AM CST
If you have one plant, you'll get plenty of seeds... just let one of the growing tips bloom & fruit! Some people say the taste isn't the same after it's bloomed, but I couldn't tell the difference, as long as I didn't pick really old leaves.
I'm learning to dance in the rain. Thank you, Sally & Chris.
Name: Duane Robinson
Kerrville, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas
Image
Poohdaddy
Oct 8, 2013 7:43 PM CST
Has anyone tried propagating Malabar Spinach by cuttings? I was considering trying it in my greenhouse this winter.
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Oct 9, 2013 4:11 PM CST

Moderator

Hi Duane

Malabar spinach should be no problem propagating from cuttings. You can either direct plant cuttings by removing leaves on lower stem and planting in the ground, leaving two or three leaves at the top. Cuttings will also root well in water.

I don't have a greenhouse (yet) so can't say how well it overwinters that way. I think it's well worth a try! Thumbs up Hurray!

Please report back. It's always good to know what is working and what folks are doing out there.

May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Duane Robinson
Kerrville, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas
Image
Poohdaddy
Oct 9, 2013 7:00 PM CST
Christine,

I figured it would be a good cutting project after I had harvested some runners. After I cut off the leaves, I put the stems on the walk path to decay/compost. After about 10 days, I was surprised that they were still somewhat green and producing new leaves!!
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Oct 10, 2013 7:12 AM CST

Moderator

Thumbs up
May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Maryville, Tn (Zone 7a)
Vegetable Grower Canning and food preservation Dog Lover Composter Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
SCurtis
Sep 24, 2014 12:46 PM CST
I started growing malabar this year in May, they grew way too slow in Tn. Didn't even get enough leaves for a salad Sad I'll try again next year with starting the seeds indoors and see if they do better.
Have a black thumb except for vegetables and that's even a hit or miss
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
Dances with Dirt
Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Garden Procrastinator Herbs Vegetable Grower Plant Identifier
Organic Gardener Keeps Goats Garden Photography Cottage Gardener Composter Houseplants
Image
gardengus
Sep 24, 2014 3:53 PM CST
I also have not had great luck with this plant. Bad germination rate and slow growth also.
Maybe some one with good experience could give some tips I'm all ears!
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: Christine
North East Texas (Zone 7b)
The WITWIT Badge Organic Gardener Native Plants and Wildflowers Critters Allowed Birds Bee Lover
Dragonflies Herbs Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Composter Hummingbirder
Image
wildflowers
Sep 24, 2014 5:02 PM CST

Moderator

That may work. They do seem to wait until it warms up to sprout and grow! I didn't grow any this year but I suspect it would have been slow growing since we had a nice cool spring.
May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day --Native American Proverb

Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
Image
RickCorey
Sep 24, 2014 5:10 PM CST
From reading, it does seem to need heat for rapid growth. Too bad you're in Zone 7 - it's perennial in frost-free zones.

Page 1 of 3 • 1 2 3

« Back to the top
« Garden.org homepage
« Heirlooms forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

National Gardening Association

© 2016 Dash Works, LLC
Times are presented in US Central Standard Time
Today's site banner is by Marilyn and is called "Cape Fuchsia"

About - Contact - Terms of Service - Privacy - Memberlist - Acorns - Links - Ask a Question - Newsletter

Follow us on TwitterWe are on Facebook.We Pin at Pinterest.Subscribe to our Youtube ChannelView our instagram