How many of you out there like beets? Okay, so Beets may not be the most popular vegetable on the planet. But those who like Beets, really love them. Home gardeners quickly discover, that Beet plants are easy to grow. Big, bulbous beet roots reach maturity quickly, and take up little space.
Almost all varieties of beets are a deep rich red. There is one white variety on the market. Beets are commonly known to bleed, or leak, their deep red juices. This juice can cause stains, so be careful where your set them.
Did you know? Beets are one of eight vegetables that makes V8 taste so great.
- There are several varieties of beets. Most are round in shape, with deep red color.
- A few varieties are deep red and cylindrical, making them easier to cut uniform slices.
- There is also an uncommon white beet.
Planting Beet Seeds:
Plant Beet seeds thinly, 1/2 inch deep. After germination, thin to 2 to 3 inches apart. Rows should be spaced 1 1/2 feet apart.
Growing Beet Plants:
Apply a general purpose fertilizer while sowing, and again two to three weeks later. Beets should be kept weed free. It is easy for weeds to overshadow the shorter beet leaves.
Do not overcrowd beets. Overcrowding will affect the development of the beet root, causing it to grow deeper and slender, rather than forming a big round bulb.
Tip: Keep the soil lightly watered. Too little water will result in a tough and leathery crop.
Days to Maturity:
Approximately 55 to 60 days for most varieties.
Insects and Pests:
Aphids and beetles will occasionally infest the plants. Treatment with insecticide is effective.
Mice and squirrels and a few other pests will sometimes nibble on your Beet crop.
Mildew and leaf spots are an occasional problem. Treat with fungicides.
Harvesting Beet Roots:
Begin to harvest beets when they are two inches in diameter, thinning the row as you go. Beets are tender when young. A big, round beet root will look really impressive, but will certainly not taste impressive, as they will get tough quickly.
Beets are sensitive to frost. But, they are a root crop. Should Jack Frost pay an unexpected visit, the beets are still harvestable.
CREDIT BY : http://www.gardenersnet.com/vegetable/beet.htm