Senior Member
Posts: 126
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 1:33 pm
Location: Central Missouri 6A

Fall harvest: beets and cabbage.

I have some seeds for beets and cabbage. I've never grown either, nor have I ever planted anything so late. I know nothing about this. I've done a bunch of google searches on the topic, and have been reading various different things. So this is kind of a broad question: How do I do it? Or, rather, how do YOU do it? I was planning to direct sow both in the ground, although one article I read said to start my cabbage indoor. Also, when direct sowing these crops, how far do you space the seeds, and do you plant extra and then thin out the seedlings?
This is a very broad question, but give me any advice you have or tell me in detail how you would/or do go about this. It would be much appreciated. Thanks!

Greener Thumb
Posts: 801
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 9:20 pm
Location: Canada zone 8b

Re: Fall harvest: beets and cabbage.

I wouldn't recommend planting cabbage now. It's too late. I sow my cabbage in very early spring, just as the ground is soft enough.

But the beets.....
They mature very quickly, almost as fast as radish even! Multiple sowing and harvesting per year is possible. I sow the seeds about 3 inches apart, and then once the seedlings get to 3 inches tall, I transplant them if they are too close together. Ideal distance between each plant should be 5 inches. Water well, especially while they are still young.

Again about the cabbage...I start mine outdoors, but I know some people prefer starting them indoors as that way there are more chances of success. Starting outdoors is easier though. Your choice.

Good luck!
Zone 8b, Canada

Senior Member
Posts: 126
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 1:33 pm
Location: Central Missouri 6A

Re: Fall harvest: beets and cabbage.

Thank you!
A couple of articles I came across said you can plant cabbage about 8 weeks before the first fall frost for fall harvest. But there is so much different information out there, it can get confusing.

Super Green Thumb
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Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 2:01 am
Location: New Orleans

Re: Fall harvest: beets and cabbage.

Beet seeds are actually in clusters and not just individual seeds. I direct sow them in the ground and when they are about 3 inches tall I gently use a trowel and pry them up, separate them and transplant them with at least 4-5 inches spacing all around. They transplant well and can take a bit of handling, but it is important to keep them watered and not let the soil dry out until they are re-established in the soil, then go back to normal watering.

As for cabbage, it is considered a fall crop down my way and it can be started here now for planting in September onward. I would start them in starter trays and transplant them in the ground when you can in your area. They get to be huge plants and take up a lot of space, which is the main reason I don't plant them. Besides, they, like cauliflower are what I call a "One and done" plant. Once you harvest the cabbage, it is done. I love growing broccoli instead, You can harvest the main head and it will make side shoots of individual stems of broccoli for weeks afterwards, thus extending their productivity. I also grow Brussels Sprouts. I would leave no less than 24 inches between cabbage plants if I grew them because they love to spread their leaves over a large area.

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Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 7:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Fall harvest: beets and cabbage.

Major concern with planting any cabbage family crop for fall harvest is that pest pressure is so high this time of the year. I have had limited success by keeping them under insect screen. I use picnic/bbq pop up umbrella style tents for foods to keep the seedling trays under, but you have to be careful none of the foliage is touching the netting. The plant under hoop tunnel. I start with lower hoops and increase to bigger hoops as necessary.

I've been meaning to take a picture for last two days, but haven't yet -- new experiment this year -- I started a "nursery bed" of thickly sown seeds in18"x24" under a rectangular food tent. I intend to thin and transplant them to permanent location as they grow up
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