Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Oh the mighty beet harvest.

So, it's a good thing that beets weren't the Adopted Crop, because it would appear that my beet growing powers are, well, weak. And that doesn't make for good television, when the star of the show is a big dud and we're all left wondering who the hell planned this hot mess and things of that nature.

I sowed two sets of beets and of those, only two beets came to fruition, and one was tiny (see tiny beet above) and it ended up germinating in the cucumber bed.

What the hell happened?

I blame the new bed. Not because it's not constructed in the same genius and sturdy manner (by Bubba WUV YOU!) as my other beds, but because I do not trust the soil mixture that I conjured for these plants. For one, there's too much mulch and for two, the Garden Soil isn't so much soil as it is fine bark mulch.

To put it in simpler terms, I think the soil is too dense and these plants are getting stifled. It may be too warm, too, but in any case, the mixture is not just right like I like it when I'm trying to make things grow rather than wither and then crush my soul with their dying.


Of the one million (estimate) beets I sowed, the two that grew to edible size were indeed delicious and I roasted them up with two other red beets that came in the Almighty Farm Share.

I didn't do anything fancy to them. I didn't even stack them up with goat cheese in the middle because OH HELL the goat cheese went bad and was very slimy (barf) when I took it out of the fridge. Plus, I didn't have any oranges and that wouldn't have been right.

So, I decided to kill a couple of birds with this particular stone and roast up the pre-promised fennel from the share as well as the beyoooteeful broccoli that came bagged and ready to toss up with the gnocchi that is becoming a freezer staple in my house.

Despite the unfanciness of this very veggieful meal, it was very good in a Hey this all came from close by except for the gnocchi and gorgonzola kind of way. I took great joy in every bite of beets, which for the record I did not share even though Bubba thought he wanted to try them again just to see if he might like them, and it satisfied my yearning for home grown beets if but for the moment.

My mom has promised me more Detroits from her garden this weekend, and so I will hold out for that.

AND, in a moment of genius (or rampant naivety), I've decided that the newly vacant (bye bye bolted lettuce that tastes like bitter ass) spot in the new bed will be first amended with some nice home-cooked compost and then sown with another round of Detroit Beets.

And how do ya LIKE ME NOW?

Yes, I get very excited for the prospect of beets, k.

I remember reading (in my Square Foot Gardening book perhaps?) that beets can be sown mid summer for a fall harvest, and that is just what I'm going to do. I briefly considered putting in a bean teepee and getting crazy on some green beans, but I already have some growing on the fence in the back and how many beans can one household eat, right? Especially given the bounty that is sure to arrive in the farm share.

Not only might I be eating in season I also might be eating a variety of seasonal foods, which I believe is something those healthy people advise so that you don't turn into a chicken McNugget or something. Who knows!

So, for those of you Adopt a Croppers quietly rooting for the beets, there you go. I grew two (ish) and ate them in grand style. I will now attempt to grow more and have a more plentiful harvest to show off in approximately 89 days which is the ridiculously long growing cycle for these beauties.

Start the clock.


  1. Funny your post is about beets today, because I roasted some beets yesterday. And don't hate me for saying this, but I am not sure if I liked them. I tried one out of the oven and it was ok. Then another and I decided that was enough. I'm going to try them tonight with some salad dressing and hope that I just don't like them warm...

  2. Just be careful how many you eat. They can make you pee pink. It's a little scary the first time it happens!

  3. Beets get no respect. What's with the whole "they taste like dirt" thing? I don't get it. Last night we had a whole mess of simmered baby beets with the greens still on and everything. They were DELICIOUS. I don't think we grow enough beets, though my husband (who is with Bubba on the beet thing) would probably say we grow altogether too many. Fine, I'll just eat his, the ingrate.

  4. Daaang, Girl! May I just adopt all of your crops? Because I'd really love to call them my own. Even just reading about your bounty gives me a little vicarious charge, like "Someday, maybe *I* can eat out of my own garden, too." You're keeping hope alive!

    (Which is to say: Yes, the tomatoes are officially dead. Dead after a family of squirrels jumped from the trees across the tops of the tomato plants and the main stem broke. Wrong all the way around. They need to be removed, but instead I choose to open the blinds and look at them sadly every morning. Meanwhile, I'm in danger of turning into a mcnugget.)

  5. Lynn - You live close by and are welcome to drop off any beets on my doorstep in the event that you decide you do not LOVE THEM SO MUCH.

    Kristin - Baby beets with the greens still on?? Oh yes, that is good. Say it again. MORE! Whoa. You eat your hunnie's beets and he can have Cheerios or something.

    Nell - Challenge accepted. When I pee pink, I'll be sure to tell you. Fun!

    Meg - Oh, Meg. We've all killed our fair share of plants. I have two mini rose bushes right now sitting like two dead twigs in a pot. And don't even get me started on the pumpkin massacre last year.

    Start over! Be strong! And cage those tomatoes so those stupid fucking squirrels can't get it. BASTARDS.

  6. How 'bout us adopt a croppers who aren't so quiet and noisily root for the beets. WooHoo!!! Beets!!! Great job and now you're talking -- more beets! If the soil is too hard/clay-like, you could try mixing a little sand into it or something? I remember my G-pa doing something like that and he had a huge crop of carrots every year. They're all roots. Beet Love!


[2013 update: You can't comment as an anonymous person anymore. Too many douchebags were leaving bullshit SPAM comments and my inbox was getting flooded, but if you're here to comment in a real way like a real person, go to it.]

Look at you commenting, that's fun.

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Sucks, right?

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