Radishes come in many different sizes, colors and flavors, so it’s easy to find something that suits your needs. You can even plant them closely in shallow trays and harvest the edible young sprouts as highly nutritious microgreens.
How to Grow Healthy Radishes
Radishes are one of the fastest growing vegetables that you can have in your garden, some being ready for harvest in as little as three weeks after sprouting. They prefer cooler weather so you can seed them as soon as the ground can be worked. They do enjoy sunshine so don’t plant them in a shady location. They’re also a great option for container gardening and even window boxes, so you don’t have to have a dedicated garden space to enjoy radishes. Radishes should be sown directly into the garden. A good idea is to plant smaller rows and do succession planting every one to two weeks depending on how many you want. They should be planted in rows, approximately a half inch deep and two inches apart.
Water regularly, especially in times of drought. Radish plants will become woody if it is too dry, and they will split if it has irregular watering. Other than making sure they get a normal routine of water, radishes are very easy going plants with few disease or pest issues. They are a perfect beginner garden plant due to their easy going ways.
Care for Radish
Radishes do best when the soil is moist, so try not to allow the soil in the radish rows to dry out. This is where the practice of mulching is beneficial in retaining moisture in warm weather. Dry soil is another thing that will make your radishes become woody so be sure to water adequately. They don’t require any fertilizer, though adding compost to their growing spot is a good idea before planting. If they’re fertilized while growing they’ll put all their energy into growing leaves and very little into the root.
Spring radishes grow fast and should be picked as soon as they’re an inch wide. If left in the ground too long they become woody. That’s why succession planting is perfect as you’ll have a continual supply of fresh radishes. To enjoy radishes at their prime be sure to harvest as soon as they’re to size, then wash, dry and store them in the fridge. For summer radishes, pull the whole plant up when the shoulders look ready. Do not leave them in too long or else they will get woody or run to seed. For winter radishes, pick when needed. They can stand cold weather, but not a hard frost.
Once you bring in your haul of radishes, you can clean them up and slice them for salads or even pickling. Keep these tips for growing radishes in mind when you plant your own vegetable garden this year!