Q&As: Growing beetroot successfully

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Daltons answers your gardening questions. Plus, your chance to win!

Send us your gardening question and be in the draw to win! Each month Daltons will answer one of your questions, which we’ll feature here. Email your question to the address below (make sure you mention which area of the country you live in – it might be important to the answer – and if necessary include a photo) and be in the draw to win a prize pack.

Last month’s winner was: Steph of Mt Albert. See her question and answer, below.



This month’s prize: 2 x Veggie Garden Prize Packs

Daltons_Veggie-Garden-Prize-Pack-300Nothing beats homegrown vegetables for taste and freshness. To ensure plentiful, healthy crops, soil should be well prepared so it’s free-draining and nutrient rich. We have 2 x Daltons Veggie Garden Prize packs, each worth $85, to give away – including everything you need for your veggie garden’s success.

Each pack contains 1 x Daltons Premium Garden Mix, 1 x Daltons Incredible Edible Vegetable Fertiliser, 1 x Besgrow Coir Mulch and 1 x Daltons Organic Bio Fungicide Granules, PLUS a pair of comfortable, versatile Red Back garden gloves from Omni Products.

To be in to win, EMAIL YOUR GARDENING QUESTION and glove size to: sweetliving@daltons.co.nz and put Daltons Premium Vegetable Pack in the subject heading. Entries must be received by end of day Friday 20 November 2015. 

Pencil line straight

extra-beetroot1Q. I am so confused about growing beetroot from seed! Everywhere I read it says successful beetroot needs a soil that’s rich in compost, sheep pellets, lime, blood and bone – all the good stuff! I have always done this when sowing my beetroot, but always with the same result – amazing leaves (huge, shiny, healthy) but NO beetroot (just tiny pitiful wee balls). I have wasted so many packets of beetroot seed, and I am so jealous of others who have easy beetroot success! Please can you help me achieve the seemingly impossible?  Steph, Mt Albert

A. It is possible that your soil preparation is a little too extensive and therefore the soil is now far too rich for this particular root crop. Unfortunately, when the soil is too rich, root vegetables like beetroot and radishes tend to only produce spectacular leaf growth, as you mention, without significant roots forming.

In future, before you plant, your soil preparation should include ensuring that the soil has good drainage and a fine tilth (very fine, not lumpy texture). Do not add blood and bone, sheep pellets, lime or any other nitrogenous fertilisers. You mentioned you are in Mt Albert (Auckland), so the soil already naturally includes many nutrients that are more than adequate to ensure you have success and grow good quality beetroot.

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