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Harvest as small baby beets - you will see the shoulders protruding from the soil – will need thinning out – slow to start germinating you may wish to soak prior to sowing to try and speed things up – each seed is in fact a cluster of seeds– harvest as small baby beets.

Boltardy, Detroit 6, Kestrel Coloured Collection (beetroot aren't only red - other colours don't stain)


Grow a short or medium rooted variety – cover with fleece or enviromesh to avoid carrot root fly – will need thinning out - harvest when they are large enough to use, scrape away soil from around the shoulder and judge whether the carrot diameter looks about right.

Carrots don’t have to be orange or long and pointed.

Early Nantes 5, Purple Haze (purple carrot) Parmex, Rainbow

More information on growing carrots here


Must be fresh seed – has a very long growing season and should be harvested after a frost as frost turns the starch into sugars and gives the parsnip a better flavour. Parsnip have a very long growing season.

White GemGladiator

More information on growing parsnips click here


Can be hard work and need earthing up so container growingis easier – choose first early varieties to harvest from mid July. If you start off the tubers in a cold greenhouse and bring out after frosts you can harvest in June.

Early potatoes can be harvested when the plants start to flower. For full sized potatoes wait until the tops have died down - use a garden fork and don't 'dig' too close to the plant or you will stab the potatoes.

More information on planting potatoes here

The Potato Council website has lots of information about potatoes including understanding terms such as earlies or maincrop, a brief history of the potato and recipe ideas.

The British Potato Variety Database can be a good source of information but is better for finding information about a particular variety that you are considering growing.

Thompson & Morgan supplies seed potatoes online and has a good selection with information on each variety. Search for first earlies or second earlies and avoid those labelled maincrop.

Choosing Plants from the Roots Family Controlling garden pests  Plant Protection  Fertliser  Growing Carrots  Sowing Parsnip Seed  Taking Some of the Hard Work Out of Planting Potatoes  Plant & seed Propagation  Propagators  Greenhouse Equipment  Potato Growing Other topics that link to this subject The following offer a range of vegetable seeds and plants. Click on an icon and use the search box to browse what is available. Key to approximate sowing and harvesting times: The resources offered here also offer more support and include cultural tips, information and a full high quality photographs showing stages of each plant's life cycle. Click here