what is eating my beet leaves?
I'm a first time vegetable gardner and it appears something is eating my beet leaves. I planted seeds so the greens are very young.
Does anyone have an idea as to what could be eating my beet leaves?
Without a description of what you are seeing, it's difficult to say. Birds will often eat the leaves of young beets, but there are several pests as well. Take a look here. Scroll down to insects. The armyworms usually feed at night and the flea beetles leave numerous small holes.
Carrion beetles typically eat the edges of leaves, leaving numerous projections around the leaves. The adults cause some damage to sugar beet, but heavier damage is done by the larvae at thinning time, usually along the edges of beet fields.
Adult blister beetles injure sugar beet by feeding on the leaves leaving only the petiole portions of the plant.
Lygus bugs cause injuries by puncturing leaf surfaces with their beaks and sucking plant juice from new succulent leaves. Affected areas turn yellow to brown, and occasionally all beet plants have discolored leaf tips. Injured plants wilt more easily than healthy ones do.
You can google any of these pests. I'd love to know what you find before you decide to use any pesticides.
Well, I believe it was a rabbit. Our vegetable garden is somewhat in a raised bed with a rabbit fence inside the bed and all the way around it. We have a partial 4x4x8 that we use as a step to get over the fence and into the garden. The young rabbit used this step to get into the garden as well! I saw it pull itself up the fence through a whole just big enough for him to get through.
We ran him out of the yard and have blocked all the wholes in the fence that a rabbit could possible squeeze through. I've re-planted some beets in another area of the garden.... I left the original beet area a lone for there are a couple left that may produce.
Ah, the Easter bunny has been chomping! Rabbits leave a diagonal cut when they chew off the leaves.