How to Plant Swede

To plant swede, you have to be very careful with the temperature and environment. Swede is the edible roots explored by a Swiss Botanist in 1960 who found its growth in Sweden. Swedes are the form of Brassica napus that includes cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, etc. Unlike the other vegetables from the same family.

Swedes are found in three types: green tops, bronze tops, and purple tops, but the most widely grown crop is purple tops. They are also identified as rutabaga in the US and often confused with the turnips because they belong to the family of cabbage. Swedes are a lot bigger in size with rough skin, whereas turnips are usually equal to tennis balls.

Plant Swede

Swede is a winter crop and can grow well in moist and cooler temperatures. However, waterlogging and drought are against the nature of its growth. It is the most uncomplicated crop to grow in the home garden only if exposed to the cooler temperature, and the seed should be sown mid to late summer, so the crop of Plant swedes matures in the fall or winter.

The choice of the season to plant swedes seed is crucial that usually determines the failure or successful crop growth. The well-drained soil that holds moisture well and nutrient-enriched soil with the area with full sun or lightly shaded area remains useful for the vegetable’s healthy development.

To sow the seed for plant swede, mark a line of 3cm and dig ¾ inch deep, dust the source evenly and cover it with the soil. Water it well to settle the seeds in the ground. When transplanting them, space rows 12 to 16 inches (30 to 40 cm) apart. Within a row, again plant swede at 12 inches (30 cm) intervals. Mulch is suggested if moisture needs to retain. 

The unique part of Swedes is that it can stay in the ground for a long time compared to other vegetables. The firm soil and cold weather improve the flavour of swedes. 


The soil that is too acidic encourages the clubroot, and Plant swedes are liable to clubroot. The ideal pH for the crop is somewhere between 7- 7.4. Regular watering and weeding for plant swede are the two primary sources to mature the crop successfully. When seedling will emerge after 10-12 days, thin to 15-20 cm (6-8″) apart. Protect the produce from the attack of rabbits with netting and fencing.

If you are planting in areas with high rainfall, it is best to grow swedes on ridges. Don’t forget to get rid of all thistles and couch grass before the plantation. The right amount of compound fertilizer ten days before plantation deteriorates the chance of a failed attempt to grow.


The swede is the long time crop that usually takes six months to mature. The time between sowing and harvesting is 20-24 weeks. The best way to identify when to harvest the swede is when the roots are about a largish apple’s size. Usually, it will happen from mid-September to early November.

Use a garden fork to ease it out of the ground gently. The growth of swine slows down as the days get short, and they gain size, and the roots push them up. 


Swedes can be stored in the cellar and garage easily for several weeks. It can be left in the ground over winter for use in spring or bulk held by twisting off the leaves, placing the globes between layers of peat or sand in a box, and kept in a cold shed.


  • Add compound fertilizer ten days before plantation.
  • Avoid excessively dry soil and prefer moist soil
  • Swede will taste much sweeter if it is left in the ground for too long.
  • This crop does not require feeding if appropriately manure the earth the previous year.
  • Store swedes in the cold shed in a sandbox or creates a pyramid of swedes on a straw and covered with another straw and soil layer.

Problems Faced

Swedes are the most comfortable vegetable to grow and well-suited to the novice gardener, but gardeners face some issues. Swedes are afflicted with the same issues which affect all brassicas, though they are rarely severely impacted. The most common problems can be diseases and pests.

Pests and Diseases

 Club Roots  

Clubroot is a fungal infection of brassicas sources, such as Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, turnip, and swollen, leading to swollen and distorted roots and stunted growth. Clubroot can infect the roots if the soil is moist and warm so that it might trigger from mid-summer until late autumn.

The symptoms of clubroot on above the ground are purplish foliage and stunted growth, which can usually result in the plant’s death. 

Powdery Mildews 

Powdery mildews are a group of related fungi that attack a wide range of plants, causing a white, dusty coating on leaves, stem, and flowers. Sometimes the fungal growth is sparse and difficult to see, despite the discolouration of the plant tissues. The infection can be avoided if the crops are grown in a more relaxed place.

Cabbage Root Fly

The maggots of cabbage root fly eat the roots of cabbages and other brassicas; they can also tunnel into the hearts of swedes, turnips, and radish. The pests lead to low growth and may wilt and die, especially transplants in early summer. To avoid the loss, grow under insect-proof mesh or horticultural fleece.


  • Gowrie is an exceptionally easy to grow, yellow-fleshed variety, providing excellent winter and tasty purple-skinned roots. It has resistance to powdery mildew and clubroot’ for healthy and reliable harvests. 
  • Angela is a kind of swedes that boasts a creamy, golden flesh covered with green skin. 
  • Wilhelmsburger is well-flavoured and resistant to powdery mildew.
  • Magres AGM has full-flavoured yellow flesh and is mildew resistant.
  • Marian a purple one with a yellow flesh and a nutty flavour. Powdery mildew and clubroot resistant.


Swede is a well-suited crop to grow that, with some challenging conditions, can benefit the farmer. Swede is a long time crop which takes around six months to mature, and the cost of preservation of the vegetable is comparatively less than another vegetable. Swedes have a delicate, sweet flavour, a great texture and are very versatile. Swedes are more available in winter and taste better after a good frost. Swedes are a good source of vitamin C, a source of dietary fibre, niacin, thiamin, and vitamin B6, and contain a significant nutritional amount of potassium.


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