May 23, 2011

Growing Radishes

Let's talk radishes. 

Why grow them?
  • They are a cool weather veggie that can be planted BEFORE your last frost date.
  • When temperatures haven't warmed up, radishes will keep you motivated because:
  • They germinate and grow quickly!

How to grow radishes:
  • Sow them directly into your garden. There is no point in buying starts as they grow quickly. Only 30 days until they will be ready for harvest! 
  • Once they have sprouted, thin them out so they are about 2-3 inches apart. 
  • Try planting a few new seeds every week so you don't end up with all your radishes ready for harvest at once.
  • Keep them moist to avoid losing that "radish crunch".

What about insects?
  • I'm afraid that worms do love radishes. 
  • You may find holes in your radish leaves, or in the actual radish. A few holes in the leaves isn't a problem, holes in your radish is.
  • To prevent this you can try covering your radishes with a "floating row cover". This will also keep your radishes from over-heating. You can find a floating row cover at most garden stores (click the image to view more info. You could also try using cheesecloth. 
  • Other tips: when planting the seeds use epsom salt, wood ash, or coffee grounds, and place in the row next to the seeds. 
Tips on growing radishes:
  • They have shallow roots,  so that you can grow them in containers.
  • They do not like temperatures above 75 degrees. If you're a lucky duck soaking up 75 degree weather, you should grow your radishes in a location that receives a "cooler" sun (morning or partial sun). 
  • You can harvest radishes whenever they look ready. The longer you leave them in the soil the more spicy (but spongy) they will become.
  • If your radish "bolts" or shoots up a long stem with a flower, you've lost her. This most likely happened because the weather was too warm or you did not provide enough water. 
What got me on a radish kick? Check out this post from about a homemade butter she made to have on her just-picked radishes:

Check out her blog to find out how to do it:

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