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Gardening A-Z

Its cousin spinach may be more popular with foodies these days, but did you know silverbeet can be used in pretty much the same way – adding goodness to soups, pies, lasagne, pizza and dips? In my book, it’s also much easier to grow and prepare than its leafy green relative.

In my opinion silver beet is the ultimate filler. It’s ideal for filling up tummies by bulking out dishes like stews, quiches or lasagnes. It’s the perfect plant for filling empty pots or tight spots in your garden, such as in between slower growing veges like cauliflower and broccoli. And it’s full of vitamins. If there were a prize for the ultimate filler, silver beet would beat out the competition.

When it comes to growing beet, or eating it for that matter, most people think of silver beet. But did you know there’s a whole rainbow of different coloured beet out there called, wait for it…rainbow beet?

I don’t know about you but, to my mind, silver beet doesn’t come across as the sexiest of fruit or veges (not up there with seductive strawberries or racy red peppers, say). But it definitely punches above its weight in other areas.

Silverbeet, you just can’t beat it for a good vegetable companion plant.

While it may feel a bit depressing to be thinking about the cooler weather already, if you want to grow your own winter vegetables March is the time to start planting.

“The secret to a successful winter vegetable garden is planning,” says Awapuni Nurseries gardening guru, Tod Palenski. “Some vegetables can take up to three months to mature so getting seedlings in early is important.”

With the cooler weather setting in, I’m spending less and less time in the garden. Donning gumboots and heading outside is losing the battle against putting my feet up in front of the fire. So any plant that requires minimal attention at this time of year is a winner in my book.

Silver beet is versatile and is easy to care for. It is the ultimate beginner gardener vegetable. It doesn’t require a lot of maintenance and is quick to mature - making it the perfect vege to plant as the weather packs in.