All About Rutabaga

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Can I Plant
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Rutabaga plants are biennial vegetables belonging to the genus Brassica and the family Brassicaceae. They are a cross between a turnip and a cabbage and are typically grown for their edible root. The root is usually round or oblong in shape and can range in color from yellow to purple. The leaves of the plant are edible as well and can be cooked like other greens. Rutabagas are a cool season crop that prefers well-drained, fertile soil and full sun. They are usually harvested in the fall and can be stored for several months.

Planning Your Garden With Rutabaga

As you plan your garden, it's important to think about the spacing, size, light, and nutrient requirements of all of your plant and how they'll grow together.

Some plants require more water than others, while other plants require dry soil. At the same time, some plants prefer full sun, and other plants need the shade to survive.

By studying what each plant requires and planning ahead where all of your plants will grow best, you can optimize your garden space.

Life Cycle Perennial
USDA Zone The USDA Hardiness Zone range for rutabaga is 3-7.
Cold Tolerance Rutabaga is a cold-hardy vegetable and can tolerate temperatures down to 25.
Days to harvest Rutabaga typically takes between 90 and 120 days to harvest, depending on the variety.
Average size The average size of a full grown rutabaga plant is about 12-18 inches in diameter.
Spacing requirements Rutabaga plants should be spaced 12-18 inches apart in rows that are 18-24 inches apart.
Sun tolerance Rutabaga is a semi-shade tolerant plant and can tolerate full sun if grown in cooler climates. In warmer climates, rutabaga should be grown in partial shade to avoid sunburn.
Shade tolerance Rutabaga is a hardy vegetable that is tolerant of partial shade. It can tolerate up to 3 hours of direct sun per day, but it will produce the best yields in full sun.
Water requirements Rutabaga requires an average of 1 inch of water per week during the growing season, with more water needed during dry or hot weather. The soil should be kept moist but not soggy. Rutabaga should not be over-watered, as this can cause the roots to become mushy and rot.
Fertilizer The amount of fertilizer you should use when growing rutabaga depends on the soil type and fertility. Generally, a balanced fertilizer with an N-P-K ratio of 10-10-10 should be applied at a rate of 1-2 pounds per 100 square feet.
Soil pH The optimum pH for growing rutabaga is 6.0 to 6.5.

Why Rutabaga is Popular

People like to grow rutabaga because it is a hardy and easy to grow vegetable that can be stored for long periods of time. It has a sweet, nutty flavor and can be used in a variety of dishes. Rutabaga is also a good source of vitamins and minerals, making it a nutritious addition to any diet.

Companion Plants For Rutabaga

Companion planting is a great way to maximize your garden space and get the most out of your plants. By planting certain plants together, you can help each other thrive. In some cases, you can even help each other repel pests.

Popular companion plants for rutabaga include:

Common Pests For Rutabaga

Plant pests are a common problem for gardeners. By understanding what pests are common for your plants, you can take steps to prevent them from damaging your plants.

When you grow rutabaga, keep an eye out for these common pests:

  • harlequin bugs
  • flea beetles
  • aphids
  • cabbage loopers
  • beetles
  • cutworms

USDA Zones

USDA zones are a popular way of determining which plants can grow in your area. Zones tell you when your average first and last frost date are, as well as how cold you can expect it to get in the winter.

Our site works best if you choose your zone from the list below. If you do not know your USDA zone, then you can use our zone map.

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