If you’re thinking of a fall-season crop that can withstand frost and thrive in cold conditions, beets or beetroots can be an ideal plant to grow and harvest from seeds.
A root vegetable found in all households, beets hold tons of nutrients in their bulbous roots and their green top – beet greens. You can also grow beet microgreens. This multi-purpose vegetable is easy to germinate and harvest in just a few steps.
How to get Beet Seeds
The most convenient way to procure beets is by buying seeds online. Check out Seed World Marketplace, a popular online platform that offers high-grade varieties of organic, heirloom, and hybrid beet seeds at attractive prices. Some of the types available are 'Ruby Queen Beet Seeds', 'Red Ace Hybrid Beet Seeds', and 'Detroit dark red beet seeds'.
When to sow beet seeds
Beets are resilient root vegetables that can tolerate cold temperatures and can be grown in spring and late summer. For a successful harvest follow the best conditions to grow beets from seeds:
- The ideal temperature to grow beets from seeds is between 50 - 85 degrees.
- You can start sowing beet seeds during midsummer when the temperatures are below 75 degrees.
- In spring when the soil temperature reaches 50 degrees and the threat of frost is over, you can begin planting the seeds.
- For a fall or autumn harvest, start sowing 4-8 weeks before the start of the first frost. You can use garden supplies like a frost blanket/garden fabric cover to protect your beets from damage.
- For growing beet microgreens, you can sow them in indoor seed starting trays and maintain the temperatures between 18-24 degrees.
How to plant Beets from Seeds
Beet seeds or beetroot seeds can be directly planted in the garden or indoors in containers.
- If you’re growing beets indoors, plant them in containers or pots that are 10 inches deep.
- For growing them in the garden, you can plant them in vegetable patches or raised soil beds with the help of garden supplies such as a seed sower planter or vibrating hand seeder for uniform planting.
- Plant the beet seeds 1-2 inches apart in a row at 1 foot apart.
- Sow the seeds ½ inches deep to provide enough room for these root vegetables to branch out and grow.
- Cover the freshly planted rows with a thin layer of soil and lightly spray water to keep them moist.
How long does it take for Beet Seeds to germinate
Depending on the variety and the beet growing seasons, the germination time may vary. The colder the climatic condition, the more delayed the germination process can get.
- If the ground temperature is at 50 degrees, germination of beet seeds can take place between 5-7 days.
- While in colder conditions, when soil temperatures drop below 50 degrees, it can take up to 2-3 weeks for germination.
- To speed up germination, you can soak the beet seeds in warm water for 24 hours before planting.
- For beet microgreens, indoor germination can take place between 2-5 days and can be harvested after 10-20 days.
How to grow Beet Seedlings
For growing healthy beets certain perquisites can be followed for a successful harvest.
Soil for beets or beetroot seedlings can include nutrient-rich compositions. They grow well in fertile soil with a pH between 6.0 - 7.0 with slight alkaline content.
Once the beet seedlings emerge, you can start watering them regularly with about 1 inch of water per square foot. Beets absorb a lot of moisture to grow well; watering them sufficiently can ensure a high yield.
Beets grow best in bright light, growing them under direct sunlight in the garden can help in producing healthy beets. If your beet seedlings are growing indoors in containers, you can move them to an area that receives optimum sun exposure.
You can use balanced fertilizers which can aid in the faster growth of beetroots and beet greens. Make sure the nitrogen content in the fertilizers is low, as too much can develop more beet greens but tiny beet bulbs underground.
- Pest control and mulch:
Mature beets and seedlings can be attacked by pests such as aphids, flea beetles, beet leaf miners, and many more. To avoid your beets from getting damaged, you can apply organic insecticides and use mulch such as silver plastic mulch/vegetable garden cover.
When to Harvest Beets
Depending on the variety, beets can be harvested between 50-70 days from planting. Beets when matured are a size of a golf ball or larger with a deep red or purple color. To harvest them you can gently pull the beetroots after loosening the soil around. For harvesting beet greens, you can do it anytime once it starts developing nutrient-rich leaves. This dual-purpose vegetable is a must-have in your indoor containers or garden.