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Growing Rutabaga, also Swedes

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
            P P        

(Best months for growing Rutabaga in USA - Zone 5a regions)

P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 45°F and 77°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 4 - 8 inches apart
  • Harvest in 10-14 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Peas, Beans, Chives
  • Avoid growing close to: Potatoes
  • Rutabaga harvest (commons.wikimedia.org - Seedambassadors - CC BY-SA 3.0)

Member of turnip family Round root vegetable with creamy white flesh and reddish purple leaves.

They take about 3 to 4 months to grow.

Grow where beans or peas have been grown the year before.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Rutabaga

Use when about the size of a tennis ball.
The leaves can be cooked like cabbage when young.

Your comments and tips

30 Dec 19, Volkhard (Australia - temperate climate)
Swedes. I planted them as seedlings in Sep/Oct. They grew ok but quite early developed flower shoots, and the roots became woody. What is the secret to avoid this? Should I plant them earlier, say July-August?
04 Jan 20, (Australia - temperate climate)
Check here https://www.gardenate.com/plant/Rutabaga?zone=2
15 Sep 18, PATRICIA GRAHAM (Australia - arid climate)
We spend 6 months in Puerto Vallarta Mexico where daily temperatures are 75 - 85 F. and almost no rain, but mild humidity. They are impossible to buy and wonder if we could grow a few for ourselves. They do not seem to import them as they do apples. We really miss them in soups and stews.
29 Jun 19, Lee (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
In short, it’d either not work at all, or it would. The problem is the temperatures/humidity you describe would make germination non-existent, or incredibly rapid. We have similar conditions at the end of summer when we have to sow our swedes. You’d have to shade them from the sun/light, and water them very carefully. What happens in that kind of heat is they sprout within two or three days, and then if they get direct sunlight, they wilt and die. The little seedlings cant take the heat, there’s not enough moisture in the top layer of soil for the tiny roots, and often the bulbs wont form even if they survive. But having said that, there is more to growing than the weather. Location is also a big factor. In Europe they say it takes up to 6months to harvest, and they grow some whoppers. I grow mine as singles in 3L containers and start harvesting from 3 to 4 months.
04 Mar 18, Scott (Australia - temperate climate)
can I grow sweedes next to or near cauliflower??
05 Mar 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
There is nothing here that says you can't grow swedes and silver beet next to caulies.
05 Mar 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
My advice would be not to grow sliver beet and swede too close to cauliflower - the reason the cauliflower could produce a big leaf area and smoother the other two crops. My broccoli plants usually end up 3-4' across and 2.5-3' high. Crowds out other plants if too close.
29 Sep 17, Daryl Pungitore (Australia - temperate climate)
How are swedes preserved? I dont really want to freeze them. Any ideas?
02 Oct 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I found this on the web. I also store carrots, beetroot and swedes in my ‘cushion’ boxes.  It is easy to store them and very convenient to pop outside to get something to prepare for dinner.  I lift the vegetables and twist off the tops and then put them into a wooden box on top of a layer of compost (you can use sand for this too).  I make sure the vegetables aren’t touching and then I cover them with compost.  This way they store beautifully over the winter. Done in a very cold place though.
02 Oct 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Probably best to just keep in the fridge.
Showing 1 - 10 of 50 comments

We spend 6 months in Puerto Vallarta Mexico where daily temperatures are 75 - 85 F. and almost no rain, but mild humidity. They are impossible to buy and wonder if we could grow a few for ourselves. They do not seem to import them as they do apples. We really miss them in soups and stews.

- PATRICIA GRAHAM

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