Beets - Knowledgebase Question

Ocala, Fl
Question by nwdustoff498
May 7, 2010
I have never been able to grow beets. I have tried to soak the seeds overnight, scar them, plant them plain during the late fall or early spring; but they never come up. Why are they so hard to grow? Also where could I find a garden plan for the side of an 8 foot hill in central FL? I have about an acre enclosed by such hills and would love to cover them with perennials. Most are sunny/poor s


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Answer from NGA
May 7, 2010

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I think I'd give the beets one more chance! Beet seeds are compound, meaning that each "seed" can actually contain up to six seeds. This however, doesn't improve germination; in fact, beets are known for spotty germination, so you may want to sow moderately heavily to assure a full crop. Optimum germination happens when the soil temperature reaches 80? F but you can plant as soon as the soil warms to 45? F and the air temperature is 50? to 65? F. To also help with germination, first soak the seed in tepid water for 2 to 3 hours.

Plant 1/2 inch deep, 2 to 4 inches apart in rows 12 to 30 inches apart. Because of the compound seed, most beets produce a cluster of seedlings, so you'll need to thin these when they are 2 to 3 inches tall. Thinned beets may be used as salad greens.

I can't supply you with a garden plan but I can direct you to a publication from the University of Florida that lists the best perennials for your gardening zone and also discusses soil preparation, etc. I hope you find it helpful. Here's the website: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffi...

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