- USDA hardiness zones:
This cool season root vegetable is edible from top to bottom, with green leaves that are best steamed and vibrantly colored roots for eating raw, or cooked in a multitude of ways. While easy to grow, fluctuating temperatures will create white rings in the roots and effect their quality. Cultivars of this easy to grow plant are available with red stems and veins making them showy in the landscape.
Beets can be started inside, in cold frames, or directly out as soon as soil is workable.
When selecting a planting location bear in mind that beets are biennials and that they are close cousins to Spinach and Swiss Chard so don't rotate them together.
Stagger plantings every 3 weeks, until about 10 weeks before your hard freeze. Seeds should be sown ¾ inch (2 cm) deep spaced an inch (2.5 cm) apart in rows 1 foot to 1 1/2 ft. (30 - 46 cm) apart. The seedball has multiple seeds in it, unless you buy specially prepared seed so you will want to thin seedlings to 4 inches (10 cm) or 6 inches (15 cm) for larger winter storage roots. Cut to remove the young plants at about 5 inches (13 cm) tall since their roots will be tangled together. During the first growing season the young beets put their energy into a large root, and then after winter they send up a flower stalk in the second season. A couple of weeks below 45F (7C) can trick plants into thinking winter has occurred which will result in a premature flower stalk. Consider choosing one of the newer cultivars bred to avoid this premature flower growth if you have unpredictable climate. Weed well but don't over fertilize as this promotes top growth at the expense of the root.
Size and growth:
- 1.0 to 3.0 feet
- 0.5 to 2.0 feet
Bloom / flowers:
- No data available