Growing KWS Feedbeet

Get the best out of KWS Feedbeet


Seedbeds need to be well prepared, ensure sufficient seed to soil contact and good moisture conservation for fast germination and emergence.

Drill at 2-3cm depth when soils have warmed up to at least 5įC and temperatures are continuing to rise. Rising soil temperatures at drilling, minimise the risk of bolting which is initiated if the beet plant is exposed to a long period of cool weather. Avoid early sowing in regions with a high risk of late frosts as cotyledons can be damaged. Don’t risk drilling on land likely to cap or slump if heavy rainfall is likely to occur within the following 24 hours.

To achieve maximum DM yield, aim to achieve a stand density of 85,000-95,000 plants/ha using a seed rate that will achieve optimum plant population. Use our seed rate calculator to calculate your seed requirements or check the tables below for the recommended seed rate.The seed activation technology, Early Plant Development (EPD) will offer faster emergence, greater field establishment and higher yields, further enhancing the features of the quality seed.

Beet is particularly sensitive to soil acidity and soils should be limed to pH 6.5 to 7.0 – slightly alkaline soils are less of an issue, but take care not to restrict availability of nutrients such as phosphorus, manganese and magnesium through over-liming. On peat soils, aim for a pH of 6-6.5.



Seed treatments should be used to provide a form of insurance and to ensure you get the best from your beet seed. Treatments should be selected to match regional needs and minimise risks from soil pests and aphids.

Insecticide treated seed will offer protection from springtails, millipedes, symphalids (known as the soil pest complex), pygmy beetle, wireworm, aphid vectors, virus yellows, capsids and leaf miners. Please check supporting trials and data and consult your BASIS qualified agronomist before deciding on the most appropriate seed treatment for your situation.

The KWS Feedbeet and Energybeet varieties are available with the following treatments:


Fertiliser Guidelines

The growth in every plant is limited by the nutrient that is least available (J. v. Liebig).

The supply of major nutrients, N, P, K is crucial for optimum yield and crop quality. Therefore a base fertilisation in autumn† is recommended. The requirements should be based on soil analyses and take into account expected yield and uptake.
N requirements should be assessed based on N-min tests prior to drilling in February/March. Typical N-use is around 80-120kg/ha applied in at least two splits made either just pre- or post drilling and then before canopy closure.
Potash is best applied prior to planting, taking care to avoid a high salt concentration around the seed, which will impact on germination. Fertiliser timing also needs to take into account the risks of leaching on lighter land. Boron and manganese are key micronutrients and foliar applications will be needed where deficiencies are likely or seen.

Weed Control

Beet is not a very competitive plant in the establishment phase and poor weed control is the most common cause of crop failure. Until the crop achieves row closure the crop will require a robust herbicide programme to keep on top of problem weed species. A clean crop with minimal competition will maximise yield potential so the ability to identify weed species and apply the correct chemistry to control these is essential. Two to hree herbicide applications will be required and product choice, timing and application rate are all important decisions and help from a BASIS qualified agronomist to monitor your beet crop and provide you with advice is highly recommended.

Leaf Disease

Powdery mildew and rust are the key leaf diseases within beet. Maintaining a disease free crop during the summer will maximise crop output and DM yield. Monitor for disease presence, particularly powdery mildew and be prepared to spray the beet from mid-late July. A second application, approximately 6 weeks later, will be required if you intend lifting the beet from November onwards. Specific advice should be sought from your BASIS qualified agronomist.

Downy Mildew: Recent UK trial work shows KWS beet varieties have a higher level of resistance to Downy Mildew compared to other varieties.
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Subjects Improved beet agronomics


Seedbeds need to be well prepared, ensure sufficient seed to soil contact and good moisture conservation for fast germination and emergence.


All Feedbeet varieties come with a KWS proprietary seed treatment called Early Plant Development (EPD).

Soil tare

The KWS breeding programme continuously aims to reduce the level of soil harvested with its high DM Feedbeet varieties.


To maximise DM yield, beet is best harvested from mid-to-late November. This is when root weight has peaked and dry matter yield will be highest.


There are currently three main methods that are advocated for the storage of KWS Feedbeet and Energybeet ...