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Growing Beetroot, also Beets

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec

(Best months for growing Beetroot in Australia - sub-tropical regions)

P = Plant in the garden.

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 7°C and 25°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 20 - 30 cm apart
  • Harvest in 7-10 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow in same bed): Onions, Silverbeet (Swiss Chard), Lettuce, Cabbage, Dwarf Beans, Dill, Peas. Strawberries
  • Avoid growing in same bed: Asparagus, Carrots, Sweetcorn, Spinach
  • Seedlings before thinning
    Seedlings before thinning
  • Young beetroot
    Young beetroot

Soak seeds in water 24 hours before planting so that you can separate the seeds. Thinning is nearly always required as seedlings emerge from a seedball of several seeds. If you don't thin them, you will get a number of rather pathetic plants which don't grow to an edible size. Harvest in 55 - 70 days but will keep in ground for longer.

Keep well-watered as dry beetroot develop a woody and inedible core. Tip from the Italian Gardener ' Make sure the top of the beet's bulb is covered with soil; this keeps the entire bulb the same color and prevents 'corkiness' at the top of the bulb." For tasty and tender beetroot, start harvesting at golfball-size.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Beetroot

Apart from boiling whole for salads, beetroot roast well, cut in wedges.
They also make a tasty salad grated raw with carrot and a little fresh orange juice.

Your comments and tips

18 Feb 17, Sam (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi just wondering if anyone has ever let their beetroot go to seed & might know whether it's worth trying to pickle them..?? or do they go woody, etc... Just seems a waste to do nothing with them...?
19 Feb 17, John (Australia - temperate climate)
Beetroot, like carrots, is a biennial, that means it grows one season and flowers and seeds the next. Root vegetables do go woody in their second season but there is no reason that you couldn't cut it up small or grate it and make pickles. You could also blend it to make beetroot dip. If there are a lot of beetroot and you like the dip idea just freeze it in recipe quantities. Don't forget to save some seed to use or share.
26 Nov 16, helen (Australia - temperate climate)
Beetroot has a whitish colour inside when cut in half but is planted with spinach
27 Nov 16, John (Australia - temperate climate)
Beetroot and Silver Beet are botanically the same plant - Beta vulgaris. One has been developed to have edible roots and the other to have edible leaves. Beetroot leaves are also edible. There are a number of reasons your query could have arisen. (1) If you had silver beet and beetroot growing in the garden and saved some seed, they may have cross-pollinated. (2) The seed may have come from the supplier like that. (3) There are many varieties and colours of beetroot; red, orange, yellow, white, and red and white rings. Was it an 'all red' variety that you planted. Let them keep growing, they will still taste the same. Trust this helps.
01 Nov 16, chris compaan (Australia - tropical climate)
moving to magnetic island always drank my beet root juice grown my own and made my own juice best possible times in tropical climate of magnetic island queensland do i need some sort of climate controlled room enviroment
28 Oct 16, Yannick (Australia - temperate climate)
I have transplanted some beetroot seedlings and they are starting to die? I have watered them regurlary. What should i I do?
18 Nov 16, John (Australia - temperate climate)
All beets (root ones) are better if sown direct into the ground. They germinate fairly readily.
22 Sep 16, Eileen Looker (Australia - temperate climate)
I planted beetroot tops which took a long time to grow but left them in the pot as the leaves looked quite decorative. I pulled one out to see if there was fruit on it but found that it had not ground round but in a tuber shape, the whole pot was full of beetroot tubers. I cooked it up thinking it would be woody but it lovely and tender and full of flavour. Is that normal for beetroot.
11 Aug 16, Margaret (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
We planted our beetroot around May. They look healthy and have abundant leaf growth. However I pulled one 3 weeks ago to see how they were coming along and there was not a vestage of a beetroot visible!!! I replanted the beetroot and it has recovered from my invasion. I have grown beetroot once and it did not take as long as this to produce the beets. The garden enjoys full sun, was well prepared prior to planting (months of preparation), and are well watered. Should we just hang in there? Cheers, Margaret
27 Aug 16, Geoff (Australia - temperate climate)
Sounds like the bed is too rich and the beetroot have put all their energy into growing foliage. I suggest that you eat the beetroot leaves in soups, with fetta in a pie etc and plant a crop that likes good rich soil such as corn, pumpkin, zucchini, lettuce or cabbage. Best to plant root veg and onion-family following corn, etc
Showing 1 - 10 of 218 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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