New Zealand Spinach is the New . . . Spinach

Spotted in a neglected corner of our backyard: New Zealand spinach (Tetragonia tetragonioides). What’s interesting is that it self-seeded and grew with no supplemental water in the middle of summer in lead and zinc contaminated soil.  We’ve never been able to grow regular (and unrelated) spinach here. But there’s no stopping the New Zealand spinach. Due to the heavy metal problem we won’t be eating this particular specimen, but when I build our new raised beds you can bet I’ll sow some New Zealand spinach for next year.

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  1. I only planted New Zealand Spinach ONCE! It tries to take over my garden every year and is an extremely happy self-sower. You may consider giving it its own raised bed as in fertile soil, it goes a bit crazy. I am just beginning to eat it fresh as its flavor is stronger than spinach, but I use it a lot now! Thanks for posting about it. Here’s a nice photo of it from my garden from July…

  2. Yup, it’s thriving in my wee tiny south orange county garden, too. “Thriving” is an understatement, I can’t give it away fast enough. Going to saute some tonight and eat it with grilled trout.

  3. I love the stuff, raw in sandwiches and my chickens love it, so when I go to pick it, I have to give some to my chickens.

  4. We’ve grown it for about 5 years now. It is planted in the “greens” section of our raised bed. Takes its time in the cool spring (we’re up by the IL/WI border), then when the summer heat kick in and the letuces and conventional spinach give up, this stuff wakes up and EXPLODES in growth. Loves the heat, and didn’t even notice the drought this summer. Tasty as a spinach substitute, and as part of mixed greens in salads.

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