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From Biology-Online Dictionary | Biology-Online Dictionary
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1. (Science: botany) a biennial plant of the genus beta, which produces an edible root the first year and seed the second year.

2. The root of plants of the genus beta, different species and varieties of which are used for the table, for feeding stock, or in making sugar.

there are many varieties of the common beet (beta vulgaris). The old white beet, cultivated for its edible leafstalks, is a distinct species (beta Cicla).

Origin: as. Bete, from L. Beta.