• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • jordan barton
  • Pearl Sutton
  • r ranson
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Greg Martin
  • Steve Thorn
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • Leigh Tate
  • Mike Haasl
master gardeners:
  • John F Dean
gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • Stacie Kim
  • Jay Angler

Caucasian mountain spinach

 
pollinator
Posts: 358
Location: south-central ME, USA - zone 5a/4b
94
cat dog duck forest garden fungi trees food preservation solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Tristan Vitali wrote:

R Laurance wrote:We have a different zone numbering system so that doesn't translate as easily. However, Daron, I am a native Oregonian and know your climate well. It is close to the same here in this region, though some winters may be colder here dipping down to about 2°-3° F for a few days, but have only experienced that once in the 20 years I've been here.  



I actually started some this year from our local seed coop - they're claiming to be growing it down to a zone 3! Sounds like this plant has quite a range, which is always a good sign.



Just a quick update here in a zone 4b: it's still early but I have two plants up and running already in a raised bed in full sun that received little mulch for the winter. We had a low-snow winter here (normal snow depth gets to 4 or 5 feet, this year was 3 or less) but also a warmer winter (most years we dip to negative 20s fahrenheit a few nights, but this year barely into the negative teens). Still waiting a few more weeks to spot more of these in other areas I've planted them before I call them a loss - we're just now nearing our last frost date here.

 
pollinator
Posts: 344
Location: Worcestershire, England
76
4
hugelkultur purity forest garden fungi trees urban bike bee woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

John Suavecito wrote:Careful about mixing sand with clay. That's how they make cobh benches-much like cement! I would much rather put gravel in my clay and add organic matter.
That lets the soil drain.  Very important.
John S
PDX OR



Surely the thing making sand and clay like cement in cob is lack of water. Clay by itself is fairly hard like cement when it is bone dry isn't it? I find sand is probably one of the better amendments for heavy clay soil and enables it to be worked well even in dry conditions..... if you are sceptical try it in a small area.
 
gardener
Posts: 654
Location: Eilean a' Cheo
226
transportation dog forest garden foraging trees books food preservation woodworking wood heat rocket stoves ungarbage
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have Hablitzia from two different sources in the UK.  The first plant is in a rather exposed position and is surviving, but not exactly thriving.  The others I grew from seed a few years ago - got very good germination and rather more seedlings than I knew what to do with! I gave some away, planted some in my 'happy habby bed' (improved with compost and old lime mortar to try and rsise the pH of my acid soil), and tucked the rest in various places around the garden, so at least they stood a chance.  That was two years ago. The ones in the habby bed grew away nicely and flowered for the past two years.  They are growing away strongly this year too.  I was surprised however this spring to find several of the forgotten plants have also survived and are shooting up nicely.  These are in unimproved acidic silty loam, most of them planted under my willow 'fedge' which shelteres my fruit jungle.  Another is under a fuchsia bush in my main front garden.  Given how wet we are, I'm really pleased to see them still alive.  Note they didn't all survive by any means, but I wasn't really expecting any to thrive and have given them no protection from slugs or other care.

I tried the first sprouts cooked, but didn't really like them much - they have a stronger flavour than the later leaves. As the shoots elongate the tips are delicious just raw.  I think they taste of a less bitter lettuce. The side leaves can be stripped off and cooked like spinach or again eaten raw, still with a mild flavour through the season.
20210510_161710.jpg
Surprise Hablitzia growing under willow fedge
Surprise Hablitzia growing under willow fedge
 
gardener
Posts: 3403
368
3
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Henry Jabel wrote:

John Suavecito wrote:Careful about mixing sand with clay. That's how they make cobh benches-much like cement! I would much rather put gravel in my clay and add organic matter.
That lets the soil drain.  Very important.
John S
PDX OR



Surely the thing making sand and clay like cement in cob is lack of water. Clay by itself is fairly hard like cement when it is bone dry isn't it? I find sand is probably one of the better amendments for heavy clay soil and enables it to be worked well even in dry conditions..... if you are sceptical try it in a small area.



I have tried it and many here have come to the same results.  I wonder if it has to do with acidic vs. alkaline soil? I won't do it again here.  I use gravel and organic material regularly here for it and it works really well.  It should work for this plant, which hates poor drainage as well.

John S
PDX OR
 
Posts: 20
Location: East of England
3
forest garden books urban
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Returning after a year since last posting to say that our caucasian spinach has grown like crazy this year! In fact I've been preaching to anyone who will listen about what a great example of a perennial plant it is. The season so far in the UK has been wet, cold, miserable and with far less sun than usual. As a result the annual spinach are the several cm of puny growth. The established caucasian spinach, only one year old, is undeterred and we are currently harvesting a bunch of leaves every day for salads.

After my initial doubts about this plant I now can't recommend it highly enough for my region!
 
Posts: 1
1
hugelkultur foraging urban
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I'm in zone 9b, Santa Cruz, CA. We are 1 mile from the coast, so weather usually doesn't get too hot or too cold. I have very sandy soil. I started H. Tamniodes seeds from Fedco last March, after cold storage in fridge and freezer. I had very good germination rates, and many tiny seedlings, but lost many in moving to pots.  By winter, I had about six seedlings go dormant. In March 2021, I planted them out to two locations. One is almost full shade, the other gets morning sun, against a wall. The plant in the sun location is doing well and is now two feet and growing with lots of sprouts at the base. The plant in shade is still only 1inch. I don't see anyone in my zone reporting any success, so I'm adding my experiences with this plant.  I'm hoping I will be able to continue growing it here!
 
gardener
Posts: 2183
Location: Ladakh, Indian Himalayas at 10,500 feet, zone 5
533
trees food preservation solar greening the desert
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Oooh! I want to grow it! Any idea where I can get seed? None of my regular seed websites list it, except Fedco, which is out of stock.
Oops, went back and read the whole thread again, and found it here for the US:
https://store.experimentalfarmnetwork.org/products/caucasian-mountain-spinach-breeding-mix
and here for the UK
https://www.incrediblevegetables.co.uk/hablitzia-tamnoides-how-to-grow/

I also noticed the discussion of New Zealand spinach upthread. I'm growing that, too, and it is perennial in my greenhouse, which goes below freezing every night for a month or two of winter; for reference,  arugula, lettuce, dill, and several others freeze but grow all winter. The New Zealand spinach (Tetragonia) turns yellow for the coldest part of winter but rebounds early in spring and puts on lots of luscious green growth. Pro: It doesn't get aphids like most other things in the greenhouse do. Con: If I cook it straight, I dislike some weird metallic flavor in it, which a few other people also taste, but most people don't. I've learned to boil it for 5-10 minutes first and discard the water, and then cook up, and then it's good. As mentioned above, the leaves are succulent and do not shrink a lot with cooking, so it's easy to collect, cook and serve a large amount. Although slow to germinate initially, it now self-seeds abundantly but the seedlings are large and visible and easy to pull.
 
John Suavecito
gardener
Posts: 3403
368
3
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I would try Quail seeds.

John S
PDX OR
 
Rebecca Norman
gardener
Posts: 2183
Location: Ladakh, Indian Himalayas at 10,500 feet, zone 5
533
trees food preservation solar greening the desert
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

John Suavecito wrote:I would try Quail seeds.


Nice website! It's currently sold out (as is Fedco) but I'll try back later.
https://www.quailseeds.com/store/p230/Hablitzia%2C_Caucasus_Spinach.html#/
(Search function on the website didn't find it as "hablitzia," "caucasian," and it wasn't on the greens or spinach pages, but was on the perennial vegetables page.)
 
Posts: 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thank you for the great info and pics! This helps a lot. I just received my Caucasian mountain spinach in the mainl. Happy growing!
 
Posts: 616
Location: Abkhazia · Cfa (humid subtropical) - temperate · clay soil
76
cat forest garden trees solar wood heat woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I found some on a friends table in a cup and growing roots.
 
John Suavecito
gardener
Posts: 3403
368
3
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Sebastian-
Is Abkhazia a great place for permaculture? It was noted in John Robbins' book "Healthy at 95" as one of the hot beds of longevity. He noticed that people were very healthy and happy there, with simple lives.    It seems like it would be a great location to grow food.  I'm sorry about the recent war.  I would think that Caucasian mountain spinach might be a native plant there.

John S
PDX OR
 
Sebastian Köln
Posts: 616
Location: Abkhazia · Cfa (humid subtropical) - temperate · clay soil
76
cat forest garden trees solar wood heat woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
John, I would say so, yes.
And it needs people with that knowledge to make the transition back to a higher population density without destroying everything.
Many people here still live a simple life, but mostly due to lack of money, which is a bit of a double-edged sword here. It enables a lot, but that also includes a lot of bad things.
I have had no problem growing things, but rather keeping the plants in check...
 
Sebastian Köln
Posts: 616
Location: Abkhazia · Cfa (humid subtropical) - temperate · clay soil
76
cat forest garden trees solar wood heat woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Sebastian Köln wrote:I found some on a friends table in a cup and growing roots.


Ops. False alarm, it is a Ipomoea. Dammit.
 
pollinator
Posts: 787
Location: BC Interior, Zone 6-7
204
forest garden tiny house books
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I planted some seeds from EFN in the spring. I'd read that they need cold stratification, which I'd dropped the ball on doing, so I just sprinkled a few in a four inch pot to see if any would come up without it. Well, lots came up, so I don't know if the stratification is that important.

They stayed in the 4" pot all summer and were a little tortured. I realized I had a bunch of stuff in black pots all sitting in the sun for a few days while it was 44° out. The roots were probably cooking. The hablitzia seemed the least bothered out of everything.

I just transplanted them into the garden. They're only about 8cm tall, but they seem really sturdy. I divided the clump in the pot in half and put one half in a mostly ornamental garden under a birch tree, where it will be shaded when the sun is high. The other half got planted at the back of a herb garden where it can grow up a Saskatoon tree that never produces well. This one will be in full sun almost all day. The soil in both places is very silty, low organic material. I mixed in a bit of sand and rock dust. The garden under the birch tree can get pretty waterlogged in the spring, so we'll see how it goes. Since the hablitzia seeds seem to sprout so easily, I'm happy to take a chance with them.
 
Posts: 22
Location: SANTA CRUZ MOUNTAINS, CA
9
homeschooling medical herbs homestead
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi Mino. I live close by you in Felton. I’m growing Hablitzia as well. What I’ve learned so far is that it seems to prefer partial shade on my property. Please let me know what else you observe. 😊
gift
 
100th Issue of Permaculture Magazine
will be released to subscribers in: soon!
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic