Yep, live and learn. You can plant small pots in the ground if they are made from peat or organic materials which decompose. If you plant seeds in plastic pots, you do not put the plastic pots in the ground. As you learned, you would want to plant one seed per plastic pot so you don't have to separate the seedlings and risk damaging their roots.
At this point, we would thin by clipping some of the beet seedlings at their base. Then, on a cloudy day, lift the beets from plastic pots very carefully, gently placing in a well-prepared soil bed that has 2 inches of compost mixed in. Plant at the same depth they experienced in the pot. Space the beet plants 4 to 6 inches apart in a row. After planting, gently water at the base of the plant.
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