How to grow beets
A lot has been written and told about the agricultural technology of this useful vegetable, but still quite often, many have the question: how to properly grow beets?
Beets are grown everywhere where there are suitable climatic conditions: from the hot south, to areas equated to the Far North. I grow it without problems in the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Okrug, where even in the beginning of summer it can snow. The thing is that beets are quite unpretentious and relatively cold-resistant, and do not require any special skills and gardening skills.
Choose a place for beets
For growing beets, it is best to choose a well-lit, non-shaded area with loose soil, taking into account crop rotation on the site. Do not plant beets for several years in a row at the same place. In addition, it is not recommended to plant it in the beds, where the previous tenant was carrots. But after cucumbers and potatoes, beets will feel very comfortable.
Preparing the soil for beets
Beets love light, well-structured and aerated, organically rich fertile soils. Heavy and dense, with high humidity, as well as soils with a high level of groundwater occurrence significantly reduce productivity.
It is best to prepare the soil for beets in the fall. It is preferable to make high ridges, and it is best to make stationary, in the form of boxes, made of suitable materials. Such ridges are more convenient to process, easier and cheaper to fertilize and maintain productivity.
Almost all organic fertilizers, with the exception of fresh manure, are suitable for spreading on beets. Yes, and any manure is not the best helper for beets, so we make it extremely dosed. But the compost can be made in good portions: it’s like with porridge, which does not deteriorate with oil.
It will be useful to add shallow litter and litter as a structuring material under beets. In addition, undergoing natural biological degradation, it will contribute to improving soil fertility. Coarse river sand can be added to heavy loamy soils.
As fertilizer, it is also worth bringing ash under the beets. The fact is that in addition to potassium, wood ash contains a large amount of boron, which is very necessary for beets. For lovers of numbers: the content of boron in the ash of firewood is from 202.8 to 476 mg / kg, depending on the type of wood. Ashes on light sandy loamy soils are best applied in spring. After all this, it will be very healthy to sow siderata with subsequent cultivation.
Based on the foregoing, one simple thing should be understood: for growing beets in a personal household, widely available organic fertilizers are quite enough, there is no need to use mineral fertilizers while observing crop rotation. This will increase the environmental friendliness of farmed products and save money.
Sowing beet seeds
The easiest way to sow beets with seeds immediately into the ground, for permanent residence. It's simple: seeds are planted individually in prepared beds, while using both dry seeds and previously germinated seeds. In the latter case, seedlings appear earlier and friendlier. Seeding depth 2-4 cm, depending on soil types.
Beets begin to sprout at quite low temperatures - from +5 degrees, however, in this case, the emergence of seedlings can be delayed for up to three weeks. With increasing temperature, seedling time is reduced. According to the observations of some gardeners, the most (quantitatively) beet seeds germinate at a temperature of +10 +15, and most quickly from +20 and above. Therefore, choose the sowing dates taking into account the climatic characteristics of the region and the duration of the growing season of the variety you have chosen.
In the general case, beets should not be sown in open ground too early: prolonged spring cooling can provoke a tendency to flowering plants. To get an early harvest, it is better to grow beets through seedlings than spoil the crop by overly early sowing.
The seeds should be positioned relative to each other so that, with subsequent thinning of the seedlings between plants, 7-8 centimeters remain. In this case, medium-sized root crops are formed, which is convenient when used for culinary purposes. To obtain larger beet root crops, the distance should be increased in accordance with your wishes.
Since most varieties of beets form multiple seeds, beets often emerge in a bunch of 2-4 plants, no matter how rarely we spread the seeds in the garden. Therefore, it is important to thin out them, leaving between the plants an interval of 7-8 centimeters, as mentioned above. If plants are carefully selected from the heap without damaging them, then they can then be planted in free space.
Beetroot refers to plants that produce water well and love the environment evenly moistened, without excess moisture. Therefore, it should be watered regularly. It’s not worth pouring the bucket immediately onto the garden bed; it’s better to pour it gently from the watering can in several stages, allowing the water to completely absorb and prevent stagnation.
Mulching gives a good effect in terms of maintaining moisture and soil structure. Beet is especially demanding for irrigation at the beginning of its growth and in the phase of actively increasing the mass of the root crop, but weeks two to three weeks before the expected harvest, irrigation can be significantly reduced. After watering, it is advisable to flush the bed with beets.
Usually, beet top dressing is not required: if initially a place was chosen correctly for it and organic matter was introduced, then beets will be what to eat all season. With confidence in a significant deficiency of any element in the soil, appropriate mineral fertilizers should be applied. Just do not invent this shortcoming yourself: if you are going to feed with mineral water - you are welcome to the laboratory for soil analysis.
We collect and store crops
They didn’t do anything special: they sowed, thinned and watered, and now the collection arrived. We collect the beets in dry weather, cut the leaves of a centimeter and a half to two above the root crop, do not touch the root, clean it carefully from the ground and dry it in the shade under a canopy. In the sun should not be. Then we put it in boxes, pour it with dry sand and put it in the cellar.
- Zhek Volodin