Indian spinach originates from Asia but is now grown in most tropical regions.
Indian spinach is a leaf vegetable. It is usually cooked (like true spinach) but can also be used raw in salads.
When cooked, Indian spinach looks and tastes similar to true spinach (Spinacia oleracea), which is probably why it got this name. But actually it belongs to a different plant family.
East Indian spinach
Espinaca blanca de Malabar
Espinaca de la China
Espinaca de Malabar
Epinard de Malabar
Spinacio della Cina
Basic information and facts
Indian spinach has its origin in Asia.
Distributed in most tropical regions.
Annual, biennial, or perennial
Indian spinach is a perennial plant, but in cooler areas it can be grown as an annual during the warmer part of the year.
Leaves and stems
Indian spinach is a soft-stemmed vine. The green leaves are thick and semi-succulent. The stalks are green or yellowish, but in some cultivars they can be purple or reddish in color.
Climate and weather
Indian spinach grows in warm tropical climates.
Indian spinach is a vine that climbs on trellis or walls and can reach 10 meter in length.
Type of soil
Prefers a humus-rich, sandy loam soil.
Indian spinach grows in full sunlight.
Indian spinach is a very fast growing vine.
Spacing (close range)
Spacing (wide range)
The Indian spinach is usually grown from seed, either direct sowing or transplanted. Seeds are saved by drying the entire fruits which are planted the next year. It can also be grown from stem or tip cuttings.
No serious insect pests.
Cercospora leaf spot
Pick leaves and stem tips.
Indian spinach is usually cooked and eaten as a vegetable just like true spinach. It can be combined in many different vegetable dishes, and is sometimes even eaten raw in salads.
Did you know that?
- Indian spinach is not true spinach; it belongs to a different family of plants.
- Indian spinach is rich in vitamins A and C, iron and calcium.