How To Grow Silverbeet in Australia

Quick Guide: Growing Rhubarb in Australia

  • Optimal Growing Temperatures: Between 5°C and 20°C.
  • Ready to Harvest: Approximately 1 year after planting.
  • Space Between Plants: Plant 90 cm apart.
  • Companion Plants: Cabbage, Broccoli, Cauliflower... (See More)
  • Plants to Avoid: None.
  • Plant Type: Propagator.

When to Plant Silverbeet in Australia

Australia Map


Best planting months for Silverbeet in the Tropical regions are from April to August. This includes areas like Cairns, Darwin, and Broome.

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For the Subtropical region, Silverbeet can be planted from January to April and August to December. Cities in the Subtropical region include Brisbane, Central Coast, and Sydney.

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Silverbeets can be planted from January to March and September to December in the Temperate regions of Australia. Cities in the Temperate region include Melbourne, Adelaide, Geelong, and Perth.

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For the Cool region, Silverbeets can be planted in the months of January, October, November, and December. Cities in the Cool region include alpine regions of Victoria and Tasmania.

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Best planting months for Silverbeets in the Arid region are January to April and August to December.

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Getting Started with Silverbeet Cultivation

To embark on a successful silverbeet cultivation journey, it's important to start with the right foundation. This section will guide you through choosing the right location and preparing the soil for your silverbeet plants.

Choosing the Right Location

Silverbeet thrives in a sunny location that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. Look for an area in your garden that is sheltered from strong winds, as this leafy vegetable prefers a protected environment. If you live in a region with hot summers, providing some shade during the hottest part of the day can help prevent bolting and prolong the growing season.

When selecting the location, consider the proximity to a water source. Silverbeet requires regular watering, so having a convenient water supply nearby will make it easier to keep your plants hydrated.

Preparing the Soil for Silverbeet

Silverbeet grows best in well-drained soil with a pH level between 6.0 and 7.0. Before planting, prepare the soil by removing any weeds, rocks, or debris. Incorporate organic matter, such as compost or well-rotted manure, into the soil to improve its structure and fertility.

To provide optimal growing conditions for your silverbeet, consider conducting a soil test. This will help you determine if any specific nutrients are lacking in your soil. Based on the test results, you can supplement the soil with appropriate organic amendments to ensure your silverbeet plants receive the necessary nutrients.

Remember to break up any clumps of soil and gently rake the surface to create a fine, crumbly texture. This will allow the silverbeet seeds or transplants to establish themselves easily.

By choosing the right location with ample sunlight and preparing the soil with organic matter, your silverbeet plants will have a strong start in their growth journey. In the next section, we will delve into the specifics of planting silverbeet, including selecting the right variety and proper planting techniques.

Planting Silverbeet

When it comes to planting silverbeet, there are a few key factors to consider to ensure a successful harvest. In this section, we will explore selecting the right silverbeet variety, sowing silverbeet seeds or transplants, and proper spacing and planting depth.

Selecting the Right Silverbeet Variety

Before planting silverbeet, it's important to choose the right variety that suits your preferences and growing conditions. There are several types of silverbeet available, including green, red, and rainbow varieties. Green silverbeet is the most common, while red and rainbow varieties add a vibrant touch to your garden.

Consider factors such as taste, colour, and texture when selecting a silverbeet variety. If you're unsure which variety to choose, consult with your local garden centre or nursery for recommendations based on your region's climate and growing conditions.

Sowing Silverbeet Seeds or Transplants

Silverbeet can be grown from either seeds or transplants. Sowing seeds directly into the garden bed is a cost-effective option, while transplants provide a head start and can be purchased from nurseries or started indoors.

If sowing seeds, prepare the soil by removing any weeds and loosening it with a garden fork or tiller. Sow the seeds at a depth of around 1 centimetre and space them according to the packet instructions, usually around 15 to 20 centimetres apart. Water the seeds gently after planting to ensure proper moisture.

For transplants, prepare the soil in the same way and dig a hole slightly larger than the root ball of the transplant. Place the transplant in the hole, ensuring that the base of the stem is level with the soil surface. Backfill the hole with soil, gently firming it around the transplant. Water the transplants thoroughly after planting to help them establish.

Proper Spacing and Planting Depth

When planting silverbeet, it's important to provide adequate spacing to allow the plants to grow and develop properly. The recommended spacing between plants is typically around 30 to 40 centimetres apart. This ensures that each plant has enough room to access sunlight, nutrients, and water.

Planting depth is also crucial for silverbeet. When sowing seeds, plant them at a depth of around 1 centimetre. For transplants, ensure that the base of the stem is level with the soil surface.

By selecting the right silverbeet variety, sowing seeds or transplants correctly, and providing proper spacing and planting depth, you can set the stage for healthy and productive silverbeet plants. Remember to water the plants regularly and provide them with the necessary care to ensure optimal growth. For more tips on growing vegetables and herbs, check out our other articles, like how to grow rhubarb in Australia or how to grow parsley in Australia.

Caring for Silverbeet Plants

Once you have planted your silverbeet, it's important to provide proper care to ensure healthy growth and a bountiful harvest. This section will cover essential aspects of caring for silverbeet, including watering and moisture requirements, fertilising silverbeet, and weed control and mulching.

Watering and Moisture Requirements

Silverbeet plants require consistent moisture to thrive. It's important to keep the soil evenly moist but not waterlogged throughout the growing season. Aim to provide about 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water per week, either through rainfall or irrigation.

To maintain adequate moisture levels, it's beneficial to mulch the soil around the silverbeet plants. Mulching helps to retain moisture, prevent weed growth, and regulate soil temperature. Organic mulches like straw or compost can be applied around the base of the plants, leaving a small space around the stem to prevent rot.

Fertilising Silverbeet

To promote healthy growth and optimal nutrient uptake, it's recommended to fertilise silverbeet plants regularly. Before planting, incorporate well-rotted compost or organic matter into the soil to improve its fertility and structure.

During the growing season, apply a balanced organic fertiliser, following the manufacturer's instructions. This will help replenish essential nutrients and support vigorous growth. Avoid over-fertilizing, as it can lead to excessive leaf growth at the expense of flavour and nutritional quality.

Weed Control and Mulching

Weeds can compete with silverbeet plants for nutrients, water, and sunlight. Therefore, it's crucial to keep the garden bed free from weeds throughout the growing season. Regularly inspect the area and remove any weeds by hand, taking care to remove the entire root system.

Mulching plays a vital role in weed control by suppressing weed growth. As mentioned earlier, applying organic mulch around the silverbeet plants helps prevent weeds from taking hold. Additionally, mulching helps conserve soil moisture and regulate soil temperature, further enhancing the overall health of the plants.

By providing adequate moisture, regular fertilisation, and effective weed control, you can ensure the well-being of your silverbeet plants. Remember to monitor the plants closely and make adjustments as needed based on their specific requirements. With proper care, you'll be rewarded with vibrant, nutritious silverbeet leaves that you can enjoy in a variety of delicious dishes.

Harvesting and Storage

Once your silverbeet plants have matured, it's time to reap the rewards of your hard work. Harvesting silverbeet at the right time and storing it properly will ensure that you can enjoy its fresh, nutritious leaves for an extended period.

When to Harvest Silverbeet

Silverbeet leaves can be harvested at various stages of growth, depending on your preferences. Young leaves can be harvested individually, allowing the plant to continue producing new leaves. This method is ideal for a continuous harvest throughout the growing season. Alternatively, you can wait until the plant has matured and harvest the entire plant.

Harvesting the outer leaves of the silverbeet plant helps promote continuous growth. As a general rule, start harvesting when the leaves are around 7 to 10 centimetres long. Ensure that the leaves are still tender and have not become tough or bitter. If the leaves are damaged or have started to yellow, it's best to remove them to maintain the overall health of the plant.

Harvesting Techniques

To harvest silverbeet, simply grasp the base of the leaf and gently pull it away from the plant. If the leaves are resistant, you can use a sharp pair of garden scissors or a knife to cut them close to the base. Be careful not to damage the central growing point or the adjacent leaves while harvesting.

For a continuous harvest, focus on harvesting the outer leaves, allowing the inner leaves to mature. This way, the plant can continue to produce new leaves, and you can enjoy a steady supply of fresh silverbeet throughout the growing season.

Storing and Preserving Silverbeet

To keep your harvested silverbeet fresh and crisp, it's important to handle and store it properly. Here are some tips for storing and preserving silverbeet:

  1. Washing: Before storing, gently wash the silverbeet leaves under cool running water to remove any dirt or debris. You can also remove the tougher stems if desired.
  2. Drying: Thoroughly pat dry the leaves with a clean towel or use a salad spinner to remove excess moisture. Drying the leaves helps prevent premature wilting and extends their shelf life.
  3. Storage: Place the silverbeet leaves in a plastic bag or an airtight container lined with a paper towel. This helps absorb any excess moisture and keeps the leaves fresh. Store them in the refrigerator's crisper drawer, where the temperature and humidity are optimal for leafy greens.
  4. Shelf Life: Properly stored silverbeet can stay fresh for up to a week in the refrigerator. However, it's best to consume it as soon as possible to enjoy the maximum flavour and nutritional benefits.

If you have an abundant harvest of silverbeet and want to preserve it for longer-term storage, consider blanching and freezing the leaves. Blanching involves briefly immersing the leaves in boiling water, followed by a quick cold-water bath. This process helps retain the colour, flavour, and texture of the silverbeet leaves. Once blanched, pack the leaves in airtight freezer bags or containers and store them in the freezer for up to six months.

By mastering the art of harvesting and storing silverbeet, you can savour the freshness and nutritional benefits of this versatile leafy green for an extended period. Remember to check out our other useful guides on growing various vegetables and herbs, such as spinach, celery, and peas, to enhance your home garden experience.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Even the most experienced gardeners encounter challenges when cultivating silverbeet. However, with the right knowledge and proactive measures, you can effectively address common issues that may arise during the growth of your silverbeet plants. In this section, we will explore how to deal with pests and diseases, identify nutritional deficiencies, and avoid common mistakes.

Dealing with Pests and Diseases

Silverbeet can fall victim to various pests and diseases that can hinder its growth and overall health. Here are a few common issues and their solutions:

Pest or Disease


Prevention and Treatment


Curling leaves, distorted growth, sticky residue

Regularly inspect plants, introduce beneficial insects like ladybugs, and use insecticidal soap if necessary

Slugs and Snails

Irregular holes in leaves, slime trails

Remove hiding places, use organic slug and snail control methods, such as beer traps or copper barriers

Leaf Miners

Trails or blotches on leaves

Remove affected leaves, apply neem oil or insecticidal soap

Powdery Mildew

The white powdery coating on leaves

Provide adequate air circulation, avoid overhead watering, and apply organic fungicides like sulfur or neem oil

Downy Mildew

Yellow patches on leaves, white fuzz on undersides

Avoid overhead watering, provide good air circulation, and use organic fungicides

Regularly inspecting your silverbeet plants and promptly addressing any pest or disease issues can help prevent them from spreading and causing significant damage. Remember to follow organic gardening practices and consider using natural pest control methods to minimise the use of harsh chemicals.

Nutritional Deficiencies and Solutions

Silverbeet plants may also experience nutritional deficiencies, resulting in stunted growth and leaf discolouration. Here are a few common deficiencies and their solutions:

Nutrient Deficiency




Pale or yellowing leaves, slow growth

Apply organic nitrogen-rich fertilisers, like compost or well-rotted manure


Yellowing between leaf veins

Add iron chelate or iron sulfate to the soil, and apply foliar spray containing iron


Yellowing between leaf veins, reddish-purple tint

Apply Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) as a soil drench or foliar spray


Yellowing leaf edges, weak stems

Apply organic potassium-rich fertilisers, like wood ash or kelp meal

Regular soil testing can help identify any nutrient deficiencies and guide you in providing the appropriate amendments. Organic options for fertilisers and soil amendments are readily available and can help maintain the health of your silverbeet plants.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

To ensure successful silverbeet cultivation, it's important to avoid common mistakes that can hinder plant growth and productivity. Here are a few key mistakes to be mindful of:

  1. Overwatering: Silverbeet prefers moist but well-drained soil. Excessive watering can lead to root rot and other water-related issues. Allow the topsoil to dry slightly between waterings.
  2. Poor Soil Preparation: Neglecting to properly prepare the soil before planting can result in nutrient deficiencies and poor drainage. Prioritise soil enrichment with organic matter, such as compost or well-rotted manure.
  3. Overcrowding: Planting silverbeets too closely together can restrict airflow and promote the spread of diseases. Follow recommended spacing guidelines to allow for adequate growth and airflow between plants.
  4. Ignoring Crop Rotation: Planting silverbeet in the same spot year after year can deplete the soil of essential nutrients and increase the risk of pests and diseases. Rotate your crops annually to maintain soil health and minimise potential issues.

By being aware of these potential pitfalls and taking proactive measures, you can troubleshoot common issues that may arise during the cultivation of silverbeet. Remember, a healthy and thriving organic garden requires attentiveness, observation, and a willingness to address problems promptly and naturally.

If you want to know how to plant herbs and vegetables in Australia, you can visit our A-Z Growing Guides.

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