Beet, with the scientific name Beta vulgaris , is a very popular vegetable both for its ease of cultivation and for its many uses. As a cooking ingredient, it is very common to use in salads and dishes of all kinds, whether raw or cooked. In addition, its leaves are also used in preboggion, a typical ingredient in Italian cuisine. It is also an ingredient in Borsch, which is a vegetable soup, and in the Colombian red salad. Its juices are also well-known and very healthy, and sugar and colorings are extracted from some varieties of beets.
If you want to learn when and how to plant beets in your own garden, join us in this article.
When to plant beets
The most common is to sow beets from mid-spring , in late April, until the beginning of summer in mid-June. However, it is a very resistant vegetable, which can cope quite well with both cold and heat.
Thanks to this, it is not uncommon for some hobbyists or farmers to cultivate it for a good part of the year, especially in rather temperate climates. If you are lucky and you live in a climate that is not excessively cold or hot, you will be able to grow beets practically all year round, with the exception of the harshest months of summer.
How to sow beets
Preparing the soil is one of the most vital points in the cultivation of beets, since it is a root vegetable that needs the soil to be loose so that it does not offer resistance and does not deform it. For this reason, it is especially important to stir it abundantly to loosen it. Also, clay soils do not get along with this plant. It is also important to enrich the land beforehand. One of our best allies will be, once again, worm humus , one of the most complete organic fertilizers that exist. We can also bring some ash to the earth. Once you have the soil ready, follow these steps to plant beets :
- Let the seeds soak the night before and water the soil so that it is somewhat damp when you sow them the next day.
- Plant them at a depth of about 3 cm, leaving about 20 to 25 cm of distance between the different plants. If you plant more than one line of them, respect at least 40 cm between the different lines. From each beet seed, which is actually a golmérulo, up to two or three plants can be born, so a rinse will be necessary, leaving only the strongest of each of them.
- After sowing, water abundantly again, although always without flooding the soil. The seeds will take approximately 10 days to germinate, at which point you should reduce the waterings to once a week or every 15 days, depending on the season and the local climate.
In just over a month it will be time to rinse, when the plants have 4 or 5 true leaves. Instead of pulling weak plants, simply prune them at ground level to avoid damaging strong ones. Finally, if there are birds in your area, it is advisable to cover your plants until they are a certain size to prevent the birds from uprooting them or feeding on them.
Beetroot – basic care
Finally, we offer you some tips on caring for beets :
- As we have already said, one of the most important points in the cultivation of beets is the soil. Add a good amount of nutrients and potassium to it , and make sure it is as loose as possible as well as offering good drainage.
- Regarding the location, it is usual to grow the beet in a location that receives 4 to 6 hours of sun a day. In very mild climates you can grow it in full sun, while in warmer climates it will be more convenient to find a semi-shady area.
- For temperature, this plant prefers temperate climates. Its most ideal temperature is between 10ºC and 24ºC , although it can withstand both higher temperatures and even some not very intense frosts.
- As for watering, the plant appreciates that the soil is moist most of the time, but it does not tolerate puddles, which can rot its roots. If you water it too little, the opposite can happen, and that is that the roots crack.
- In about three months from planting, your beets will be ready to be harvested.