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Video: How To Grow Beets
My experience of growing beets - a tasty and healthy root vegetable
Sometimes I hear complaints from gardeners, especially beginners, that beets are failing. And this is understandable - each culture has its own secrets. How many gardeners there are, for example, who have never seen a good carrot. The same is with beets. But for me, there have been no problems with these vegetables for a long time. Growing such beets so that they are born and stored until the next harvest is as easy as shelling pears.
Beet planting scheme
It grows as if by itself, it requires only a minimum of worries from me. If you know its biodynamics, then the seeds can be sown in almost all signs of the zodiac - in Taurus, Cancer, Libra, Scorpio, Capricorn, Pisces and even in Virgo. If you look at the planets, then in any year you can get a harvest without any problems. The year of the Sun is not very suitable for her, but if all her botanical needs are met, then you will not notice that this is not her planet. For example, I try to sow beets in Capricorn on the waning moon. I noticed that with this sowing, it forms beautiful standard root crops and is reliably stored until the next harvest. The year 2010 is the year of the Sun, sowing beets when the moon was in Capricorn. The agricultural technology was high, the roots did not grow very large, but they survived until the fall of 2011.
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Beets can be grown anywhere in the world where there are soil and climatic conditions.
Its first requirement is that it does not grow on acidic soils. The required acidity level (pH) is 6.5-7, even 7.2 is possible. However, beets also do not accept strongly alkaline soil. On acidic soils, after the emergence of seedlings, the plant freezes, the leaves are very small, acquire a light yellow color, grow poorly, i.e. the leaf outlet is very small, which means that the root crop will not grow. And if you have severely deoxidized the soil, i.e. made it alkaline, the main nutrients become inaccessible to plants, especially the lack of boron and magnesium. Gray spots form on the leaves and roots, which then darken and dry.
The second requirement of beets is that the ridge should be well filled with organic matter. As a last resort, if manure was introduced under its predecessor. It turns out that on poor soil you cannot get good, sweet beets, no matter what bacteria you introduce from the bottles, no matter how you water the plantings with special solutions of biological products. Organics are a must.
The third requirement of beets is to provide the beets with proper temperature and water conditions.
The fourth requirement of beets is to fill the ridge with those nutritional elements to which this culture responds well.
For more than a decade, I have been growing beets in the same ridge where onions are planted:
xxxxxo - onion, x - beet The length of the bed is arbitrary
Between two rows of onions, along the very edge of the garden, I make holes with my finger to the depth of one phalanx. Then I carefully pour water into them and put the sprouted (more precisely, sprouted) seeds there. You can have one, or you can have two seeds. I lightly press down the soil in the hole and immediately cover it with dry soil, as if mulching. Before sprouting and after their emergence, I never water the holes, the roots themselves will find moisture. I always cook the ridge since autumn. The acidity requirements of onions are the same as those of beets. If you use lime or dolomite flour, you can apply them in the fall. I use ash - I scatter it over the garden in the spring.
Top dressing of beets
In the fall, I dig deep into the soil in the garden - with a full bayonet of a shovel. At the bottom of the formed groove, I lay plant residues - flowers, Jerusalem artichoke stalks, leaves of root crops, i.e. everything that has bloomed and borne fruit. I sprinkle double superphosphate, sometimes dolomite flour, if there is little ash, I close this groove with soil from a new digging row. I repeat everything in the resulting groove. And so on until the end of the garden. I do not break clods (my soil is sandy loam). So I leave it until spring, and the lumps crumble themselves. In very early spring, as soon as it is possible to walk along the path, I scatter ashes over the garden bed, if I did not add dolomite flour, I must add humus or compost, azophoska, potassium magnesium. Sometimes, instead of azofoska, I buy a diammofoska (see the fertilizer application rates on the packages). Then I dig the soil shallowly with a pitchfork. But in the first half of the growing season, you cannot do without nitrogen. Also, from the very beginning of pecking seeds, phosphorus is needed, without it, roots grow poorly, the root crop develops poorly, the growth of beets stops. And without potash fertilizers, beets or onions will not be sweet, fruit formation is delayed, they are poorly stored, and the resistance of plants to drought and frost decreases.
How much organic is needed? It depends on what kind of soil you have. Beets grow poorly on swampy, waterlogged soils and soils with a close occurrence of groundwater. Our site is located in such an area. Therefore, every autumn I bury plant residues in the garden bed. Once the boggy soil on the site was covered with sand, now in the garden with a layer of sandy loam 30 cm, and below - water. So for my beds, I determined the rate of organic matter introduction both on sandy and sandy loam soils - up to 5 kg of humus or compost per 1 square meter of the garden. I sprinkle a 6-7 kg bucket of humus over 2 m², and if it's compost, then over 1.5 m². And also, since the fall, plant remains have been buried in the garden; they also affect the harvest almost like manure. On loamy soils, where there is more natural humus than I have on sandy loam, the rate of organic matter can be reduced. No humusmanure, compost - you can grow crops on Omuga (fertilizer based on nonmetallic materials), "Giant". If under the predecessor the ridge was well filled with manure, then for the beets you can add half as much humus or compost. This is how I cook the ridge for the onions, and at the same time, food remains for the beets growing along the edge of the garden. It is not for nothing that a popular omen claims that beets love if the hostess walks along the furrow and touches her leaves with her feet.if the hostess walks along the furrow and touches her leaves with her feet.if the hostess walks along the furrow and touches her leaves with her feet.
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Experts recommend adding up to 3 g of boric acid per 1 m² (0.5 teaspoon) and magnesium sulfate (1 teaspoon) per 1 m² when sowing beets. If in the spring I add potassium magnesium sulfate, then there is no need to add magnesium sulfate. I water the plantings with boric acid later, but when digging it I don't add it. I don't really focus on preparing seeds for sowing. I calibrate them, i.e. I discard the trifles, then soak them in warm water in rags for a day or 10-12 hours, as time permits. Then I squeeze out the moisture and keep the seeds near the stove for 2-3 days, but in the afternoon I unfold the rags to ventilate the seeds and see if they have sprouted. Some varieties germinate in a day, while others - in 4-5 days. I do not soak them in stimulants or micronutrients.
The timing of sowing seeds is determined not just by spring, but by the time of return frosts so that the seedlings do not freeze. I know that some gardeners grow beets through seedlings. They will sow seeds early in the greenhouse, it grows very well and quickly there. As a rule, they are sown thickly, just as thickly it sprouts, picks up 4-5 leaves, and it is too early to plant in open ground - it's cold. Then they will plant these overgrowths on the garden bed and begin to water them, nurture them. I just have no time to do this - I sow right in the ridge. Seeds germinate at a temperature of + 4 … 5 ° C, shoots appear in two to three weeks. But the optimum temperature for growing beets is + 22 … 25 ° С. Seedlings tolerate cooling down to -2 … -3 ° С, and an increased temperature is needed during the period of leaf growth. Therefore, if the beet plants have sprung up and stopped growing, do not rush to feed immediately,but pay attention to the temperature of the soil (I measure it with a thermometer) and air, since it is known that phosphorus does not work at a temperature of + 10 ° С, nitrogen fertilizers - at + 6 ° С.
Sowing in open ground is carried out approximately May 15-20, and in the middle lane - May 10-15. In our area near Vyborg, usually on May 16-18, there is a cold snap with snow and freezing rain. Therefore, I sow beets in late May-early June. Nothing terrible will happen to the crop if sown after the June frosts, until the end of September it will have time to grow, as long as there is moisture in the top layer of the soil during sowing. Indeed, under the influence of low temperatures and long daylight hours, beets can turn into color if sown very early or before winter.
The seed bags now indicate the growing season of a particular variety. For example, in 2009 I sowed beets on June 9 - Slavyanka varieties (vegetation period 125-130 days), Betina (100-120 days), Regala (105 days). All of them were removed in late September - early October. The harvest was very good. Sometimes gardeners complain that the beets begin to grow after harvesting. The first reason is that according to the growing season, it still had to grow and grow (a late variety with a growing season, for example, over 130 days), and you removed it. Like all other root crops, the beet harvest after harvesting must still go through a two-week quarantine period in a cool place at a temperature of + 5 ° C … + 7 ° C.
The depth of planting seeds on light soils is 3-4 cm, on heavy soils - 2-3 cm. Those whose soil is cold from close groundwater, it is better to make a ridge 20-25 cm high, and it is better to choose the width of the ridge so that three rows are located beets.
On wide ridges, the leaves strongly shade each other; when thinning, gardeners sometimes feel sorry to remove excess plants or they simply do not have time to thin out in time. And it turns out that there are many tops, and instead of root crops, only tails have formed. The feeding area of one plant should be at least 30x15 cm, if you have 20 cm between the rows, then you also need to leave 20 cm between the plants, i.e. to provide a scheme of 20x20 cm. Of course, a lot still depends on the variety of beets and how the soil is filled. I remember that at one time the recommended scheme was 30x16-18 cm on fertile soils and 30x14 cm on poor soils. But then there was no Cylinder variety, which requires a large area. If your ridge is formed in three rows, then plant beets of the Cylinder variety at the edges, and round-fruited varieties in the middle.
Thinning is required! I don't have to do it. If two plants have sprung up in the nest, then they grow like that. They grow large, but not huge. And some of them go to the table in the summer. Loose beets love, but I do not do it on purpose. I just loosen the onion on the garden bed and at the same time walk with a hoe along the edge of the ridge where the beets grow, and at the same time I will remove the weeds from the sides. I water the onion from the onion fly with table salt (NaCl) - 1 glass per 10 liters of water, this solution also gets on the beets. Sometimes I use potassium chloride instead of salt. When I remove the onions (I don't feed them), I immediately start working with the beets. First, I remove the yellow and broken large leaves. Sprinkle with ashes and immediately loosen. I water both the soil and the leaves. While the water is absorbing, at this time I dilute the boric acid solution, 3 grams per bucket of water. I also water this solution over the soil and over the leaves. I pour about one watering can with a volume of 7 liters per 1 linear meter of the garden. When the solution is absorbed, I immediately loosen the soil and do nothing else before harvesting. Beets grow freely for more than two months.
If you grow beets in separate beds, then you need to remember that the critical period for beets is late July - early August, when there is a rapid growth of root crops. During this period, it absorbs 50% of all nutrients. This means that feeding will be very useful. And here each gardener decides for himself what to feed. Here you really need to look at the plants, notice what they need more - organic fertilizers or some nutrient is missing. Some gardeners water the plantings with herbal infusion. During the season, one can make such a top dressing, the beets will then grow up, prettier, but will not be sweeter.
I never water my beets. If in a very hot summer I water the onion once, then the beets will get it. The north-western region of Russia is a fertile zone for most garden crops. Where, on what fields do we water potatoes, beets, carrots ?! Gardeners can water those crops in which the root system does not go into the depths, but spreads. In root crops, it goes deeply, and we have the strongest dew. A pumpkin has roots up to 5 meters deep, and for some reason it is watered.
After digging, I immediately cut off the tops with a knife, leave 1-2 cm stumps and put the beets in an old trough, a basin. I put it on the ground in the shed, cover it with something on top so that the moisture does not evaporate, but I do not wrap it up. The ground in the barn is already cold in October, the nights are cold. So she lies for two weeks, no more. Then I sort it out, the pieces of the petioles have dried up, I break them off, I take some of the beets to the cellar, and I take some of the harvest to the apartment. The storage temperature is needed + 1 … + 3 ° С.
I don't write about pests and diseases, because if you give the beets everything they love, then there will be no diseases or pests.
In conclusion, I want to offer my readers my recipe for a delicious preparation for winter storage.
Beetroot with apples
2 kg of beets, 1 kg of carrots - grate on a coarse grater; 1 kg of tomatoes - grind; 1 kg of onion, finely chopped; 1 kg of apples - can be chopped into pieces, can be grated on a coarse grater; 300 g of vegetable oil; 1 cup granulated sugar; 1 tablespoon of salt.
Put everything in a saucepan one by one and simmer for one hour, stirring occasionally. Arrange in sterile jars, immediately roll up the lids, turn upside down and wrap until cool. You will get about six 800-gram cans of tasty billet.