Broken Trowel logo

Where Are the Beets?

ILLUSTRATIONS BY MARILYNNE ROACH

My city-slicker-turned-country-boy husband tilled the Spring soil, and I planted the garden. We had just moved from Washington, D.C. to rural Pennsylvania so we could raise our family in a more secure environment.

We saved a row for one of my husband’s favorite vegetables—red beets. But I had forgotten to buy beet seeds. I asked him to pick up a packet at the local garden supply store on his way home from work. Then, since it looked like it was going to rain, he volunteered to plant the seeds while I fixed dinner.

When I was a child, my family always had a huge garden. My siblings and I had done a lot of weeding, so I had no trouble telling our sprouting vegetables from sprouting weeds. I began looking for the red beets and, sure enough, soon found green leaves with red veins pushing through the soil. The leaves were lighter green than I remembered—perhaps he had bought a new variety.

A few weeks later, I pulled up one of the plants, but didn’t find a little beet. I reasoned that I’d pulled it too soon.

After several weeks of watching the beautiful glossy beet leaves grow, I pulled another one. Again, no beets. I went to the garden shed and looked for the seed packet my husband had bought—it was Swiss chard!

The next year, I bought the beet seeds.

This article was published originally in 2019, in GreenPrints Issue #117.


Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Enter Your Log In Credentials

This setting should only be used on your home or work computer.

GreenPrints is an active member of the following industry associations: