In choosing which vegetables you need to plant, you have to think of more than just calories. Here are the reasons why beets are great for your vegetable garden:
In SHTF situations, you may not have a lot of time to fuss over your garden, so you need a crop that’s easy to plant and is low-maintenance. Beets grow very fast – the bulbs mature within 50 to 70 days for most varieties, but you can pick them anytime. You can wait longer if you want larger bulbs, but not too long as they may become too tough and woody. Their large leaves also mean weeds do not receive enough light to fully develop, so they don’t require as much weeding as many other crops.
Food may be scarce when SHTF, so you’d want a vegetable that you can maximize for consumption. All the parts of beet are completely edible as long as you know how to prepare them:
Because food may not be available all the time, you will need vegetables that will keep for a long time when stored. Beets can be canned, but you can also preserve them in damp sand. Potatoes can be preserved this way and they keep for about four to five months. Beets keep for two to four months, according to some sources.
You’d need all the calories you can get to survive, but you also need to be mindful of which nutrients you put into your body. Although corn and potatoes are just as easy to grow and provide more calories per pound (about 350 compared to beets’ 180), beets are not very high in sugars and fats but contain plenty of protein, sodium, potassium, calcium, and fiber. Their health benefits include:
Beets thrive well even in soil that is not rich in nitrogen, but it does need phosphorus to survive. Checking your soil’s mineral content will tell you whether you need amendments for your survival garden or not.
Learn the best tips about growing your own vegetable garden at HomeGardeningNews.com.