Beets are such a popular plant to grow, and not just because they are easy and simple to grow for beginners! This is because beets are nutritious sources of vitamins A and C, and they are versatile when using them in dishes, whether raw or cooked.
Whether you are planning to grow beets or have grown them already, it may have you wondering about the different colors of beets. In fact, some gardeners have questioned, ‘why are my red beets white inside?’ You might have expected a different color, which has you wonder if it’s safe to eat or normal in your plants.
Read on to find out what causes red beets to be white inside!
Why Are My Red Beets White Inside?
Beets are round and hard little vegetable balls growing under the ground, sprouting out wet and with dirt. They are known for being red.
However, beets don’t just come in red varieties, there are white varieties as well. There are also other colors, such as yellow or brown, and even candy-striped beets that have alternating rings of red and white.
All these varieties, regardless of the color, are edible. However, they do have differences in flavor and its components. For instance, some people claim that white and Chioggia beets taste sweeter, while others would say that those varieties lack the antioxidants found in red varieties.
So, when you see beets of different colors, it has nothing to do with the cultivation methods or the environment. The way you grow beets doesn’t change their colors, but the only cause would come from the seeds and the way we breed varieties.
If you are breeding varieties and mixing seeds, then there may be a chance that a red beet would be white inside. Or you may come across a white beet after planting red varieties, or vice versa. However, this is rare (but not unknown), with very complex explanations behind it, which would be better explained by trained biologists or geneticists.
That said, if ever you are growing beetroot varieties other than the Chioggia variety, then you shouldn’t normally find white zones or pale flesh in red beets. This may indicate poor soil quality and/or water stress.
Tips to Care for Beets Properly
Let’s delve deeper into the water stress and poor soil quality causing red beets to be white inside.
Beets need to be grown in soil that stays moist constantly and where the soil isn’t allowed to dry between watering sessions. If ever the soil does dry out and is exposed to hot weather, then your red beets end up having white rings developing in their flesh. You may also come across pale beets and/or beets that have a very strong flavor.
While it is still edible, it’s best to evaluate the soil quality and the frequency of watering. You’ll want to have high-quality beets that are consistent with the colors of their variety.
Here is what you can do to care for your beets well to ensure their colors and flavors remain consistent:
- Make sure you prepare the soil beds properly before planting beets. Test out the soil’s pH levels to ensure that it stays consistent, ideally between 6.5 to 7.5 for beets. If ever your soil is too acidic, you can neutralize it by adding limestone to your soil.
- Beets appreciate a substantial amount of nitrogen, so you might want to feed your plants every 2 weeks, starting when your plant grows to around 19 centimeters tall.
- Beets like salty soil, so you can give water them with a weak salt solution every other week. You can do this by diluting 1 teaspoon of household salt in every 4.5 liters of clean water.
- Sow only fresh beet seeds and water the soil beds consistently and evenly. This will ensure you won’t have too much trouble, if any at all, during the next growing seasons.
Wrapping It Up
There are so many different types of beet varieties and needs, so if you come across red beets that are white inside, it’s best to evaluate its soil! That said, they are still edible and can be enjoyed as you normally consume beets, it may just have something to do with breeding the varieties or its soil requirements. As long as you give your beets the proper care requirements throughout the growth and harvest process, there’s nothing to worry about.
Hopefully, you learned a lot about beets and their varieties from this article! If you are planning to grow beets, take this information in mind, and don’t be surprised if you do see a red beet with white colors inside. Happy gardening!