Spinach is a vegetable of easy culture. It may either be sown in spring or fall. If in fall, the proper time is from the 10th to the 25th of September, in rows one foot apart; sow rather thickly. Cover the plants with two or three inches of hay or leaves on the approach of severe frost in December. When sown in the fall, the crop of course is ready for use much earlier than when sown in spring, as half the growth is made in the fall months. By the time the seed can be sown in spring, the crop that has been wintered over will be coming into use. To follow the crop thus wintered, seeds should be sown in the same manner in spring, as early as the soil can be worked, and another sowing may be made two weeks later. The round-seeded variety is best for winter sowing, and the prickly seeded for spring. About four ounces is enough for ordinary wants for either season's sowing.
In the southern states, or even in oar northern summers, Spinach runs rapidly to seed, if sown in hot weather, and several plants may be used as substitutes. Among these are Swiss Chard, a species of beet, sometimes called Spinach Beet, or Perpetual Spinach. Young plants of the ordinary beet are by some preferred to spinach; ordinarily beets need thinning, and the seed is sometimes sown very thickly, in order that there may be an abundance of thinnings to use as spinach, or beet greens; they are used with the young beet attached, which should not be thicker than an ordinary lead-pencil; if larger, the leaves will be too strong. Another substitute is New Zealand Spinach.