Beets are surprisingly easy to grow in Central Texas as the weather cools. My favorite varieties of beets to grow here include Chiogga beets, Golden beets, and Detroit Dark Red beets.
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WHEN TO GROW BEETS
Beets, like carrots, love cooler weather and are typically grown in the spring and fall, our favorite times to garden here in Austin. Beets actually sprout best when the soil temps are above 50°F and below 80°F.
Central Texas Monthly Planting Guide
Take all the guesswork out of your seasonal planting.
WHERE TO GROW BEETS
Plant your beets somewhere they’ll receive at least 6 to 8 hours of sun each day. We love growing beets in raised-bed vegetable gardens for two reasons:
1. Beets don’t do very well in clay-heavy soils, which is what we mostly have in this region. Raised beds allow you to start with nutrient-rich soil that drains well.
2. Raised beds give beets room to really put down some roots and stay awhile.
Beets also do well in containers if you are short on space and want to grow this fun root crop. Learn more about growing in containers here.
HOW TO SOW BEET SEEDS
1. Before you plant beets, use a shovel or hori hori to loosen the soil down about 8 to 10 inches deep. Remove any debris, twigs, and weeds that might cause the developing root to feel cramped. You want your beets to feel like they have all the space in the world to form large, juicy roots (the main part we want to eat).
You have two options here:
Leave the beet seedlings alone and let them grow close together, this is called “multi-sowing”. The beets will grow close together and you will have some big and small beets growing in a cluster.
Basically, picture how large a mature beet is, double that, and make sure you leave at least that much room between their green tops. Take the little seedlings that you’ve thinned and enjoy their greens in your next salad or smoothie.
HOW TO CARE FOR BEETS
WHEN TO HARVEST BEETS
One thing I love about growing root crops like beets is that you can eat their greens anytime! You’ll harvest the actual beet root once it’s between 1″ and 3″ in diameter.
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