Last Updated on October 8, 2022 by Real Men Sow
The longevity spinach or the Gynura Procumbens is a vegetable plant common in Africa, China and Southeast Asia. Because it is native to tropical habitats and locations, it would thrive in warm, tropical climates. These plants are low-growing and spread quickly on the ground they grow on. However, you can also grow them in pots. Also known as “semi-succulents,” these plants have thicker, fleshier portions.
What is the Longevity Spinach?
As a healthy green vegetable, longevity spinach, also known as Gynura procumbens, is becoming more popular.
If you’ve ever wondered what longevity spinach leaves do or how to cultivate them properly, keep reading. This post will cover all you need about long-term spinach and how to grow them in your home.
These low-growing plants may be grown in pots and on the ground, but they tend to spread. Also known as “semi-succulents,” these plants have thicker, fleshier portions.
Plantae’s Compositae family includes Gynura, which goes by the scientific name Gynura procumbens. Not anthurium, but longevity spinach!
The maximum height for longevity spinach is 12 inches. It can also grow to 6 inches in height. The plant will begin to produce flowers in spring, with orange inflorescences growing on the axillary stem.
The plant is a perennial that can produce spinach for many years. It would eventually become a herbaceous shrub that is smaller than trees, with taller stems. It has wavy, cross-sectional, short and soft stems. You may also grow them in pots or in the garden and will thrive all year. This plant has a significant advantage: it is autotrophic and can produce nutritious organic complex compounds.
The longevity spinach leaves are smooth and fleshy, rounder than ovate. They have greenish undersides, but they are purplish on the upper. The length of the leaves is 3 inches, and their width is 1.3 inches.
Side Effects of Eating Them
Consuming longevity spinach is safe unless you have an allergy. You can try one leaf if you have food allergies. Consuming large amounts of it can cause diarrhoea. This is also true for other green leafy vegetables. You can reap the many health benefits of consuming only 10-15 leaves per day. You can start with five to eight leaves per day if you aren’t a fan of the flavour.
Are They Invasive?
Imagine it in ideal soil and climate conditions. There is the possibility that longevity spinach could “go wild”, taking up more space than it needs. Although it won’t harm other plants, it can be mildly invasive if left unchecked.
It’s not difficult to manage the longevity of your spinach plants. It should be harvested when the leaves become mature. This will make the plant bushy and less likely to spread, so it can be kept in one place.
This spinach is excellent for your diet, so you don’t need to worry about its toxic levels. Even though they are safe for pets and children, small amounts can be eaten by them. It’s not something to be concerned about if your pets accidentally touch or ingest it. You can display it anywhere, provided the containers or pots aren’t broken or dangerous.
How To Grow Longevity Spinach
You can grow longevity spinach indoors and outdoors. They are very hardy and will thrive in both indoor and outdoor settings. They will trail or cover the ground when you plant them outdoors. To make them look more like bushes, you can trim them. You can also trim them if they are in a pot.
No matter where they are placed, longevity spinach must meet specific nutritional requirements. This includes water, light and the quality of the soil. It is vital to take into account the climate of your area. The following section will discuss how to grow it indoors.
This plant is a perennial, trailing vine that has its stems green. It snaps quickly if bent. To make it a small bush, ensure its tips are cut regularly. The base becomes thicker and browner as it ages. Older leaves will grow 6 inches in length. The serrations at the edges of leaves are not obvious.
The stem trailing along the ground root grows to the soil from the stem’s parts. It can grow up to 1-2 feet tall with its stems measuring 15-20 feet. This is why the ground cover is a good choice for the plant. The stems can rest on nearby supports if they are strong enough, but they will not grow very tall without proper support.
These plants also grow quickly. It will reach 2 feet tall and then grow faster until you are ready to harvest the leaves.
How To Grow Longevity Spinach Indoors
Longevity spinach should be grown in loose soil with lots of drainages to ensure maximum growth. Root rot can occur when your plant has poor drainage. Your soil must also be moist enough to keep the roots from drying.
Balance in soil quality and type would be a great help. Longevity spinach doesn’t care about the type of soil you use. It is essential to find rich soil with adequate drainage. Consider adding used coffee grounds or tea leaves to your soil.
Give roots space, and ensure the pots are at least 1-2 feet deep. Although you can have two or three plants in a single pot, they may compete for nutrients or moisture. Too many plants can result in rootbound and a halt to their growth. Prevent this by checking on your plants regularly and thinning them as necessary.
If you are planting multiple plants outdoors, place them at 2-foot intervals. They will create a dense mat over time. They shouldn’t be competing for nutrients.
When To Plant
Many garden suppliers sell longevity spinach. It may not be easy to find them depending on where you live. They can be purchased online or at your local garden store.
The longevity plant is tolerant to frost and prefers warm climates. Cover your plant with old sheets and blankets if you expect late frost. This will ensure the plant is completely covered and secure around the stems. In cold weather, you can move the plant indoors.
It is best to plant it in March. The flowers will usually bloom between mid-July and early August. This will depend on your location, the temperature, and the growing season.
General Care for the Longevity Spinach
Your plants’ watering needs are just as important. There are two types of water: too much or too little. Allow the soil to dry between watering by looking at the top inch. If you can see it is dry, water it.
Here are some quick tips for watering longevity spinach plants.
- Do NOT water your plant daily. It is crucial to make sure the soil doesn’t dry completely and that the soil has sufficient time to absorb most of the water. This will ensure that roots remain healthy and hydrated to grow well.
- Don’t pour water directly onto your plant. Instead, water the soil surrounding your plant. Too much water absorption can lead to soggy leaves.
- The Amount of Water should vary depending on the weather. If winter and temperatures drop, plants will grow slower, so they won’t require as much water. Watering should not change if the temperature in your greenhouse or indoors remains constant throughout the year.
- To make up for the days you missed from your watering schedule, do not overwater your plants. Instead, you should be more concerned with maintaining a balanced soil moisture level.
Light and Temperature Requirements
Make your plant more adaptable to the full sun by giving it regular breaks. This will keep the roots from drying out. The ideal temperature for the plant should be 70°F. It is best to avoid exposing it to too cold or too hot as this can cause damage to its health and hinder its development.
When temperatures drop below 40°F, keep it indoors. If that is not possible, you can also propagate from existing plants and plant the offspring in spring. If you keep your plant indoors but don’t have enough light, you should invest in a grow lamp to ensure it thrives.
The longevity of spinach is less dependent on high humidity levels than on other plants. You will still need to pay attention to the moisture balance of the roots and leaves.
A good tip is to mist your plants. This helps high-humidity plants thrive in low humidity levels. This is more difficult for longevity spinach. To prevent disease, you need to dry the leaves. A humidifier is a good option if you live in extremely dry areas. You don’t need one if you have plants that are already well-situated.
Fertilize your plant every quarter. They don’t need specific fertilizers as long as the fertilizer is nitrogen-rich. It’s best to use both blood meal and fish fertilizer.
These plants do not require fertilizer when they are planted in the ground. However, it is necessary to fertilize when you are rowing in pots as the plants will quickly use up the nutrients in the soil. The soil quality is the most important factor in determining the fertilizer needed. You can tell if your plants are not growing well or look sick. When watering your plants, you can use organic materials such as earthworm castings and compost mixed with water.
Propagating Longevity Spinach
You can save your cuttings during the winter and if it is colder. You should take out as many cuttings as possible to ensure your indoor plants thrive. If you live in warmer climates, where the plant is a perennial, you can plant a new plant in a different area of your yard or indoors.
- Cut the stems or shoots of the plant to prepare it for cutting. You should cut just below a leaf. You should remove most leaves and leave a few on the top. For better results, our experts suggest that you dip the stem of the cut plant in a rooting hormone.
- Put the plant cuttings into a container with water and soil. For the next 10-14 days, temperatures should be between 65 and 75°F.
- Mist the cuttings every day. They will root in two weeks. You can fertilize the cuttings every few weeks if you desire lush growth.
Harvesting the Longevity Spinach
You can harvest longevity spinach in two different ways. If your plant is still young, you should not harvest too many leaves at once. Also, wait until it has eight or more leaves before pulling any off. To encourage plant growth, only take the top two inches of each stem. This will help keep your plant compact and bushy.
First, remove all stem tips from the plant leaves. Another method is to only remove the leaves from the stems that are longer.
Removing Leaves from The Stems
This promotes new growth and is easier to manage than the first. The tips of the vines should be harvested to prevent the plant’s spread, which gives it a bushier appearance. The harvesting method you choose will depend on your preferences.
Once you have built up your plant supply, you can begin to harvest leaves every day. You can harvest leaves daily if your plants are more significant so that they will regrow quickly. When the leaves are tender, they are best harvested in spring and summer. If they plant flowers, the leaves can become tougher. This is why gardeners choose to remove the flower buds before they bloom. For a new taste in your dishes, make sure to pick the young and fresh tips right before you eat.
Pick older leaves to dry for tea. They are more likely to be rich in bioactive substances and retain less water than younger leaves. This allows them to dry faster.
Common Problems of Longevity Spinach
Although this leafy vegetable can be eaten, it is not susceptible to pests. There are still some that will visit your plant to get its nutrients.
The beetle is one of the most prevalent pests. It’s something to keep an eye out for. Aphids, stress plants, and other pests can cause damage to longevity spinach. It’s not as difficult as you might think. Gardeners report little or no pests.
You can remove mites and whiteflies from your plants by washing them under a sink or using organic pesticides like Neem Oil. Make sure you check for leaf damage, such as holes. Even though the damage may be minor, it is essential to not let it get worse.
Aphids can also be a problem if you move your plants indoors. Natural pest control comes from sunlight. These pests are more common in whiteflies and other plant varieties. They can be removed by using a homemade or organic aphid spray. If you are in a pinch or need something more affordable, soapy water might be a good choice.
You should immediately remove infested leaves and stems. Do not compost infested plant material. This will stop diseases and infestations from spreading.
Your leaves might be turning yellow. This could be a sign of nitrogen deficiency. This sign that your plant may suffer from a lack of nitrogen. Fertilize your plant every three to four months after it has started to grow.
Sometimes, your leaves may have white tunnels running through them. This is a sign of a leaf miner infestation. If this happens, you should remove infested leaves and cover the plants with a cloth to protect them from the flies. Your leaves may have specks and curl up. This is usually a sign that aphids infest your plants. These tiny, green insects feed on the plants’ nutrient-rich fluids.
Aphids will colonize under leaves and leave sticky residue called honeydew. Aphid infestations can be very problematic because they are fast-growing. Spray leaves with water to get rid of these pesky pests. Then let them dry in the sun.