The world of spinach varieties is ever changing. The reason is mildew is constantly evolving. The plant breeders are looking all the time for new strains that are resistant to this disease of spinach. We grow the savoy type which is not the most popular. Flat leaf spinach is loved by the corporations that make those cheap spinach bags you see in the store. The reason is that they wash easily. Our spinach gets dirty just like the flat leaf, but it is much harder to wash by machine. The fact that the savoy types are so much more flavorful is trumped by the fact that it is cheaper to wash the flat leaf. We can take just a minute or two extra to get that great taste. This spinach is almost ready to pick. We have plantings for later this month and into early March.
Last September the nursery planted a mixture of three lettuce varieties into the same trays for us. So we now have beds full of multicolored lettuce. If we wanted to just pick red lettuce, then this would slow down the harvest. We will pick a mixture for your harvest share next week and we will try to mix the colors. This saves us a considerable amount of money for the propagation. If we ordered 1,000 plants of each variety the cost would be $130 per 1,000.
If we mix the varieties and they sow 3,000 the cost falls to $60 per 1,000 at total cost of $180 compared to $390. We are expanding this to other crops this year, as our propagation costs are around $40,000 per year plus seed. I have sent mixed heirloom tomatoes, slicing tomatoes and cabbages to the nursery to plant this spring. If we can save $15,000 that will go a little way to offset some of our other increased expenses.