Problems of Beets

How To Use This Problems Section
The chart is organized to give you a quick and dirty summary of the possible symptoms that you may encounter. Those problem causes for which we have full files will be linked to those files. Those causes with no link will have a paragraph below the chart helping you deal with that particular problem.

Problems With Beets
SymptomsProbable Cause
Beet Roots Are Woody in TextureCultural Stress
Beet Roots are MisshapenOvercrowding
Cracked rootsImproper Watering
Leaves have purplish tintSoil Too Acidic
Leaves Blotched With White TrailsLeafminers
Foliage Curls; Puckers; Turns YellowAphids
Little Tiny Holes In LeavesFlea Beetles
Plant Weakens; Leaves Turn YellowWhiteflies
Plants wilt and dieWireworms
Leaves Develop Spots On Top and UndersidesPowdery Mildew – a fungal disease

Beet Roots Are Woody in Texture indicates Cultural Stress

Woody textured roots (excessively high temperatures, lack of water, roots too large); poor root development (overcrowding, improper nutrition); internal black spots in roots, dead bottom leaves (boron deficiency - use 1 T. household borax to 12 gallons of water per 100 square feet, lime acidic soil according to soil test).

Beet Roots are Misshapen means Overcrowding

Thin beets early. Cracked roots means Improper Watering. Maintain adequate soil moisture.

Leaves have purplish tint means Soil Too Acidic

Beets don't grow well in acidic soil; below a pH of 6.5. The leaves get a reddish coloration, with a purplish tint that initially affects the margins or tips. The discoloration spreads to the entire leaf surface, including the veins, while the leaf tips first affected die. Later, they become dark brown when the red pigment has disintegrated. Excessive acidity in the soil keeps the beet plant from being able to get boron, an important micronutrient. You can solve this problem by raising the pH of the soil where you are growing beets. Powdered or granulated limestone takes too long to have effect, so use liquid limestone that is mixed with water and will immediately raise the pH or the level of acidity around the beets. The variety Detroit Dark Red is one beet that is able to tolerate more acid soils.

The following questions were asked by visitors who viewed this page:
see all questions...

Do you have a gardening question? Ask Nancy