The first generation (F1) of the spinach tyee hybrids start producing flowers, and their leaves have been harvesting regularly once per week. Their leaves remain in a good taste and crunchy. The most amazing thing that their leaves are bigger and growing faster in this late Spring or early Summer rather than during the last Autumn.
The photos above were taken after about 3 months since the photos in the former article two months ago. The first photo, most of the plants are taller up to a meter and need support to stand up. The second photo is the male flowers at the top of the plant. The third photo is the female flowers in the nook between their stems. Occasionally, there may be monoecious plants in a spinach population that express both male and female flowers are on the same plant, but these are less common.
The application of the worm castings or vermicompost (in five replicates) may prolong the life cycle of the spinach plants and produce more leaves. There is no chance to see the rooting system of the plants yet. The explanation for the results of the trial that the spinach tyee hybrid plants produce more leaves and live longer over the Winter and Spring could be caused by the chemical, biological, and physical factors.
The supply of the high available nutrients, humic and fulvic acids, and plant growth regulators found in the vermicompost may support the growth of the plants. It has been reported in many articles that these substances are products of the beneficial soil microbes in association with the gut of the compost worms. The application of the worm castings also increase the water holding capacity, so the soil will keep in moist condition.
I need to do more trials in larger scale for the application of the worm castings or vermicompost to prolong the life cycle of the other horticultural and medicinal plants; in order to save the time and the cost of growing the plants from the seeds; just continue growing the plants annually until the plants decreasing their production.
This Autumn, the spinach plants will be a year old. I may up-date the information about their rooting system after the application of the vermicompost and the maximum life span of the spinach tyee hybrid plants later. Hope that the plants will produce seeds and survive until the second Winter of this year.
(to be continued…)
– Bintoro Gunadi