This page gives written and visual instructions on how to grow beets. The model we will be using for the Fall is the Moneta Monogerm F1.
It is important to keep in mind that beet crops mature quickly in light or loamy soils with a pH over 6.0. In general, cool temperatures produce the best flesh color. Acute weather fluctuations will cause "zoning," white rings, in the roots.
Transplant: Sow seeds indoors in early spring, about 5-6 weeks before transplanting out after heavy frosts become infrequent. Sow seeds 1/4" deep, 3-4 seeds per inch. Transplant out 3" apart in rows 12-18" apart.
How To Grow Beets From Direct Seeding: Begin early sowings when soil has warmed somewhat after thawing. Sow in a 2-4" wide band, about 15 seeds/ft. (10/ft. if sown in single line), 1/2" deep, rows 12-18" apart. Thinning is not necessary.
For a continuous supply of greens and small tender beets, sow seed at 2-week intervals until 8 weeks before regular heavy frosts are expected.
Keep your growing beet crop well irrigated to prevent "scab," pictured at the right, the same disorder that affects potatoes, causing raised brown rough spots on the mature roots.
Internal breakdown or browning is most likely to occur in alkaline soils after prolonged hot, dry periods. This is caused by a deficiency of the nutrient boron. Rotate crops to prevent Cercospora leaf spot.
HARVEST And STORAGE: Fork or undermine, lift plants, wash and hydrocool, and store bunches 10 days at 32°F (0°C) and 95% humidity.
WINTER STORAGE OF ROOTS: Sow about 10 weeks before heavy freeze is expected. Cut tops, wash, and store 6 months at 32°F (0°C) and 95% humidity.
DAYS TO MATURITY: 48 From direct seeding; subtract 14-21 days if transplants are used.
For seeds, OG means "organically grown" and signifies seeds harvested from plants grown organically, without synthetic fertilizers or pesticides and according to National Organic Program standards.
The Moneta is single-seed feature for precision sowing. A typical beet "seed" is a "fruit" that can contain more than one embryo.
Monogerm beet seeds contain only one embryo. This feature eliminates thinning and results in superior uniformity. Smooth, deeply colored roots with medium-tall greens.
Plant Cycle: Annual
Days to Maturity: 46
I planted my beets according to schedule. In my raised vegetable garden beds, I dug furrows that were about two inches deep and two inches wide.
Then I sowed my beet seeds generously in order to make sure I had enough to germinate. I will probably have to thin some later.
In the picture below are beet seeds.
After planting my beet seeds, I covered them according to the instructions on the package which was 1/4 to 1/2 inch. I spread some sifted soil on the beet seeds. Then watered.
In the picture below are my watered furrows.
I decided to use the furrows this time to see if they would help me keep track of my seeds as well as help me water them. When the beets are about three inches high I will need to thin them to about three inches apart. Now you know how to grow beets.
The picture at top is our son Matthew holding some of our harvest.
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