Spinach Farming: How To Make Ksh500,000 From An Acre Of Spinach In 3 Months

Spinach is a popular leafy vegetable and it’s farming is practiced in many parts of Kenya. Farmers produce it as an important cash crop since it is highly marketable. Spinach also takes a very short time of about 6 to 8 weeks to mature, hence giving the investor quick returns. This beautiful green vegetable is loved for its high nutritional value.

spinach farming in Kenya
Spinach farming in Kenya

Nutritional Value of Spinach

Spinach is an excellent source of vitamin K, which is important for blood clotting and bone health. Spinach also contains high amounts of vitamin A, which is important for maintaining healthy vision and immune function. Additionally, spinach is a good source of vitamin C, which is important for collagen synthesis and antioxidant activity. 

Spinach also contains significant amounts of folate, which is important for cell growth and development, and iron, which is important for blood health. Spinach also contains smaller amounts of several other vitamins and minerals, including calcium, potassium, and magnesium. It is a low calorie leafy green vegetable that can be consumed raw, steamed, sautéed and it is considered as a superfood.

How to make money with spinach farming in Kenya

To successfully grow spinach in Kenya, it is important to understand the ecological requirements, land preparation, seedling transplanting and spacing, fertilizer application, common pests and their control, common diseases and their control, harvesting and packaging and marketing.

Ecological requirements

Spinach grows best in cool temperatures, with a range of 15 to 20 degrees Celsius. They require a lot of water to grow well hence performing best in high rainfall areas or under irrigation.

spinach farming in Kenya irrigation
Spinach farming in Kenya under irrigation

Spinach can be grown in a wide range of soils, but well-drained, fertile soils are ideal. Spinach prefers a slightly acidic soil with a pH range of 6.0 to 6.8. It is a frost-sensitive crop and therefore should be planted during the warmer months of the year.


Land preparation

Before planting your spinach, the land should be ploughed and harrowed to a fine tilth. This will help to remove any large clumps of soil and remove any weeds that may compete with your crop for soil nutrients. The soil should be well-drained and have a good supply of organic matter. If the soils are more of clay than loam, you can still plant spinach but make sure you do this on raised beds.


Seedling transplanting and spacing

Spinach seedlings should be transplanted when they are around four weeks old. To achieve the best results, you should ensure that you plant well raised, disease-free seedlings. You can get ready to plant spinach seedlings from Richfarm Kenya Nurseries by visiting them or ordering through 0724698357 or 0723213602.

When transplanting spinach, the seedlings should be spaced at a distance of 30 x 30 cm in the row. With this spacing, one acre will accommodate 32,000 plants of spinach. This will allow the plants to develop properly and produce a good yield.


Fertilizer application

Spinach requires a moderate amount of fertilizer application to grow well. A general fertilizer application of NPK 20-20-20 at the rate of 50 kg/acre is recommended. The fertilizer should be applied at planting time and then again when the plants are about 20 cm tall. However, it is always important to start with a soil test to establish if there are nutrients significantly lacking in your soil so you can add more of that.


Common pests and their control

Common pests that affect spinach include aphids, flea beetles, cutworms and leaf miners. These pests can be controlled by using insecticides or by using cultural methods such as crop rotation and proper sanitation.


Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects that feed on the sap of spinach leaves. They can cause distorted growth and discoloration of leaves. To control aphids organically, farmers can use insecticidal soap, neem oil or horticultural oil. They can also use beneficial insects like ladybugs, lacewings and parasitic wasps to control aphid population. There are a number of chemical solutions that you can also use to control aphids in spinach farming if you choose to go this way. We would recommend Kingcode Elite or Loyalty from Green Life chemicals.

Flea beetles

Flea beetles are small, black or brown beetles that feed on the leaves of spinach, leaving small, round holes. They can cause severe damage to young plants. To control flea beetles, farmers can use paper mulch to prevent them from reaching the plants, and they can also use insecticides like pyrethrin or carbaryl.


Cutworms are the larval stage of certain moths, they are often found in the soil and feed on the stems of spinach plants, cutting them off at ground level. To control cutworms, farmers can use Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) a biological insecticide, or they can use traps to catch the adult moths. Rotating crops and removing debris from the field can also help reduce the population of cutworms.

Leaf miners

Leaf miners are the larvae of certain types of flies, moths, and beetles that feed on the leaves of spinach, creating winding, white or brown trails within the leaf tissue. They can cause significant damage to spinach leaves, and heavy infestations can cause wilting and death of the affected plants.

There are several methods that can be used to control leaf miners in spinach. One method is using paper mulch, which prevent the adult insects from laying eggs on the spinach leaves. Another method is using sticky traps, which trap adult insects before they can lay eggs. Removing infested leaves and destroying them, cleaning up debris and rotating spinach with other crops also helps in controlling leaf miners.

If you decide using insecticides that specifically target leaf miners, then consider neonicotinoids, spinosyns, and avermectins. These insecticides can be applied as a foliar spray, a soil drench or as a seed treatment.

It is important to note that when using pesticides, farmers should always follow the instructions on the label and use the minimum amount necessary to control the pest. Integrated pest management (IPM) approach that combines multiple methods can be effective in controlling pests without harming the environment.

Common diseases and their control

Common diseases that affect spinach include powdery mildew, downy mildew and white rust. These diseases can be controlled by using fungicides or by using cultural methods such as crop rotation and proper sanitation.


Harvesting and packaging Spinach

Spinach takes just 4 weeks from seedling transplanting to maturity. They should be harvested when the leaves are fully grown and attain a dark green colour. One plant will give you several pickings in its lifetime. After picking the mature leaves, give the plant 5 to 7 days and you will have another lot ready for harvesting.

The leaves should be picked by hand and packed into crates or bags for transportation to the market. The leaves should not be stacked too high as this will damage the lower leaves. It is important to harvest spinach early in the day when the leaves are still crisp and before the sun gets too hot.


Marketing spinach in Kenya

Spinach market in Kenya is so wide that you cannot exhaust it. However, you will need to put some effort in marketing in order to get the maximum profit from your spinach farming projects. To fetch the best prices I suggest using the following 3 strategies:

  1. Leveraging Social Media: Using social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to let people know that you are producing high quality spinach will attract you buyers you never imagined. You can go a notch higher and create a campaign using influencers, chefs, nutritionists and dietitians to demonstrate the versatility of your spinach; even suggest how it can be prepared in different dishes. This will greatly increase consumer interest and demand for the product.
  2. Partnering with supermarkets and restaurants: Partnering with supermarkets and restaurants in Kenya is a great way to directly sell your spinach to the end consumer. However, to do this, you must have high quality products and most importantly, a consistent production.
  3. Leveraging referrals and word of mouth: if you produce enough high quality spinach, you can ask your buyers to pass inform other interested buyers in the local markets. The word can spread fast if they love your product and you will get buyers flocking to your farm gate every day. 

How profitable Spinach farming in Kenya is

Spinach farming in Kenya is a highly profitable venture for farmers. The demand for spinach is increasing fast because of the growing population and an increasing awareness of the nutritional benefits of consuming leafy greens. Additionally, spinach is a relatively easy crop to grow and can be grown in a variety of conditions, making it accessible to farmers with different levels of experience and resources.

The profitability of spinach farming in Kenya can vary depending on factors such as the cost of inputs, the yield per acre, and the price of the crop at market.

As a rough estimate, it can cost around Ksh100,000 – 150,000 to farm one acre of spinach in Kenya: this includes the cost of seedlings, fertilizer, labour, pest and disease management. This cost can vary depending on the location, the type of spinach variety and the farming methods used.

In terms of expected returns, spinach is considered a high-value crop, and farmers can potentially earn a significant profit from farming one acre of spinach. Spinach is in high demand in Kenya, particularly in urban areas. However, the price of spinach can vary depending on the season and market conditions. A farmer can expect to earn around Ksh300,000 to Ksh500,000 from one acre of spinach.

This is an estimate and the actual returns may vary based on the factors mentioned earlier, such as the cost of inputs and the price of the crop at market. It's also important to note that farming spinach is a business and farmers should do proper market research, have a well-laid plan and have a good understanding of their costs and potential returns before committing to farming an acre of spinach. 


rpwanali said...

Beautiful summary

Anonymous said...

I have good land and a big dam .....Where can I get a partner to do this farming

Anonymous said...

Where is the land situated?

Anonymous said...

Where to be specific?

Anonymous said...

How many grams of seeds is needed for an acre

Anonymous said...

Am happy to hear and read this information about spinach plantation.

Anonymous said...

100000 kshs you are just doing guesswork thats not true.

Flick said...

100000 Kshs is too much you are just doing guesswork on your claim