Spinach is a cool weather, hardy crop that is commonly used in salads, soups, pasta dishes, and so much more. The ideal temperature for the plant is 55°F to 60°F, and the plant can withstand temperatures as low as 15°F to 20°F. It’s is a very nutritious food that is a good source of vitamin K, C, A, E, and B-6. Cooked spinach has lower levels folate and vitamin C but has higher levels of Vitamin A and iron than raw spinach. Here are 15 more interesting agriculture facts about the plant:
- Spinach is native to Persia and was introduced to China in the 7th It was brought to the United States around 1806.
- During medieval times, the green pigment extracted from spinach was used as ink for artwork.
- The top producer of the crop in the U.S. is California.
- The second, third, and fourth top producers of spinach are Arizona, New Jersey, and Texas.
- The crop comes in three different varieties: savoy, semi savoy, and flat leaf.
- The crop can be planted in spring, fall, and even winter in some areas.
- In the spring, planting can start as soon as the soil can be properly worked.
- During the spring, planting should be done every two weeks.
- Because the crop does better in cooler temperatures, common spinach cannot grow in midsummer.
- Sandy soils are preferred when planting the crop because it drains early and warms quicker.
- When the crop reaches the desired size, it is time to harvest. If you wait too long to harvest spinach, it will break or begin to yellow.
- Before selling, the crop is washed and cut and typically has a storage life of 10 to 14 days.
- In 2016, around 47,500 acres of spinach was harvested in the United States.
- 57 million pounds of fresh spinach was marketed, and 78,450 tons were canned and frozen in 2016.
- By the 8th day after harvesting it, the crop loses half of its major nutrients.
Written by: Amber DiCarlo, Marketing Intern