Sunday, April 10, 2011

Gardening 101: How to plant spring onions and beets?

This weekend was also the time to plant my beets and to transplant my spring onions. I use Spring onions a lot in my cooking so I have a healthy supply of this perennial plant around. Beets are not my favorite, but my son really likes them and I usually buy the canned variety. Well no more, I am planting enough beets to keep him happier and healthier!

Let's start with the spring onions. As mentioned they are perennials, and you can plant them right now if you buy them from sets. You need to be careful where to plant them as they will return year after year. They are not invasive, but they do reproduce, so you can keep eating them all season long. I planted mine last year and I decided to move them to a better spot this year as well as use some of the new plants as a natural fence to keep away rabbits from my garden (how? click here for post). You can plant Spring onions as early as 4 weeks before the last frost and can divide them as soon as they come back out of the ground in early spring. I had enough spring onions this year to give some to my neighbour who is starting her new garden, do my natural fence and set up 2 squares full of them. To harvest your spring onions, you can either pull a whole plant out (yummy grilled with garlic and olive oil) or you can remove the bigger leaves as you go.

To plant your squares, simply divide the square into 9 pieces and plant 3 rows of 3 spring onions on each square.

Now the Beets: I planted my beets from seeds. I am not sure how this will turn out as this is my first time with beets. I am only going to plant 2 squares this year with beets as only my son likes them. I planted the first square this weekend with 9 beets and I will plant the second square in 3 weeks time. That way I can ensure that he will have time to eat the first 9 beets before the other ones are ready, so we can have a continuous supply of beets.

To plant the square, I divided the square into 9 smaller squares (3 rows of 3) and made a small hole on each one with my finger. I planted 2 seeds in each square and slightly cover them with 1/2 inch of soil. Water and you are done.

You can also eat the leaves of the beets. I have never tried them, but I will find some recipes as soon as they are ready. I will let you know how it turns out. If you know a recipe, please let me know.

Spring onions ready! Beets ready! So much more to plant!

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How to plant onions from sets?

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