Ceylon Spinach, Malabar Spinach. Very pretty and unusual plant for decorating pergolas and hanging baskets and for eating in salads and other healthy ways. Thrives in hot weather. The Malabar Spinach is a common vegetable in tropical Africa and southeast Asia, where it originated. Only the young leaves are eaten. To prepare, boil and discard water. Young leaves can be added to a green salad. The whole plant is used as a mind sedative. Propagation: Seeds.