One of my favourite crops last year was spinach beet (aka ‘perpetual spinach’) – like the regular stuff found rammed inside pre-packed supermarket bags, but with super powers. A rapidly growing, large leaved green that keeps coming back at you, despite being regularly shorn of its iron rich leaves. If Popeye got a load of this stuff then Bluto would’ve chucked in the towel long before the invention of colour TV.
It’s easy to grow, although germination is a little erratic so sowing extra seeds is advisable, allowing the growing plants to fight it out among themselves for survival.
Last year my efforts produced half a dozen stubborn plants in a mini raised bed, which kept me in spinach throughout spring and summer, through to the shortening autumn days when they finally started to look ragged and wilt for good.
But over winter a miracle occurred. Thanks to my lazy policy of not removing dead veg until I need the space for something new, they somehow managed to survive the frosts with an extended power nap and are once more pumping out fresh, tasty leaves as quickly as I can eat them.
I had even sown new seeds a few weeks ago, assuming I would need new plants to feed my spinach-hungry appetite, but such is the vigorous growth from the old guard I’ll be weeding out those seedlings to make way for something else.