Planting Guide and Seed Saving Notes for Orach

Orach (Atriplex hortensis)

Orach, also called Mountain Spinach, is an annual leaf vegetable with a spinach-like taste. The shimmery leaves in vivid colors of red, gold, pink, purple, carmine and green are a colorful addition to salads.

 

How to Grow Orach from Seed

Bed Preparation

 

Planting

Direct seeds 2" apart and two weeks before last frost for spring and early summer harvest or plant in late summer for fall harvest.

Harvest

Harvest when less then 18" high for tender salad greens or pick leaves from mature plants for cooking.

How to Save Orach Seeds

When growing Orach for seed, thin plants to 18" spacing in rows 22-30 inches apart. Orach is a wind-pollinated monoecious species that produces two different types of seed; one larger bracted yellow-brown seed and one smaller black seed. The Seeds for saving are mature when the bracts enclosing the seed turn tan and papery, the smaller black seeds have low germination and should be excluded from saving. Isolation distance: 1 mile, seed viable for 2 years.