NZ Gardener - Garden Diary 2018 - - Plant Now -

Beet­root is such a ver­sa­tile vege, be­ing use­ful (and de­li­cious) at ev­ery growth stage. Beets can be sown thickly for snip­ping as mi­cro­greens or gourmet salad leaves, or plucked after 8–10 weeks to roast whole or grate raw into sal­ads. Or you can leave them in the ground all sum­mer then boil, peel, slice and pre­serve in jars. To pre­serve beet­root, make a sim­ple pick­ling so­lu­tion from 1 cup malt vine­gar, 1 cup wa­ter and ½ cup white or brown sugar. Sim­mer for 5 min­utes then pour over the hot beet­root in jars and seal. Pick­led beets keep for at least a year. Sow beet­root di­rect, or trans­plant pun­nets of seedlings,. Plant in rich, free-drain­ing, well-cul­ti­vated soil. Beets pre­fer to cool roots so, if pos­si­ble, choose a spot that gets a lit­tle re­spite from the hottest sun in mid­sum­mer, or they’ll bolt to seed.

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