If you haven’t ever tried to grow food for yourself here is your new best friend. Radishes grow very quickly and are one of the best ways to get your salad garden started. They are so easy to grow, can be planted any time of year and you’ll be eating them in 4-6 weeks. Don’t throw out the leaf tops unless your compost is begging for bulk because they are more nutritional than the root and quite edible as a leafy green, either in a stir fry or a salad. The seeds are also a spicy addition to salads – Germans even eat them as an accompaniment to beer.
The first records of radish cultivation are nearly impossible to trace as, in the words of Zohary and Hopf “there are almost no archaeological records available”. It is assumed that they originated in West Asia and Europe.
There are a great many varieties of radish and we would encourage all gardeners to try out as many as they want. The colour options alone represent exciting culinary options not found anywhere but your own back yard. They can be black, candy-striped, deep red, pink and white with a great many other shades to boot!
Health and Nutrition
Radishes are rich in ascorbic acid which is an antioxidant. They have good carbohydrate value and will really help make a full meal out of your salad. The radish has, like most vegetables, a wide range of nutritional components including potassium, calcium and magnesium. Radish has long been used as treatment for liver disorders. Radishes have the same potassium by weight as bananas.
We do not recommend seedling transplanting but rather direct sown seed broadcast.
When to sow
Radish can be sown all year round and in summer they germinate very quickly and can be at harvest size in 4 weeks! In winter the growth is slower
Broadcast and then thinned to 5-10 cm
Just sow direct on soil and then cover with mulch and water regularly.
Time to harvest
Radishes are one of the quickest crops. They will only take 4 weeks in the warmer weather and 6-8 in cooler times. We recommend successional plantings with radish as the turn around is so quick, every 2 or 3 weeks pull some out and plant more in.
Keep moist and use a reasonable fertile soil though not a heavy feeder.
Pests and diseases
Radish is from the Brassicaceae family and care should be taken with regards to the fungal root problems commonly found in other members of the family like broccoli.