harvesting horseradish

"Hello, I am in zone 5. My Horseradish is 4 ft. I would like to know how to harvest it? Also how to go about preperation for using it. Thankyou very much! Amanda"
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

"I couldn't find anything on the bhg.com/gardening site, so I looked it up in our MiracleGro Complete Guide to Vegetables, Fruits & Herbs book. Here's what it says about harvesting and preparing horseradish:

Cuttings planted in spring produce mature roots in 180 to 240 days, but for the best flavor leave the roots in the ground until after a few frosts have sweetened them. Roots may need two or more seasons to reach usable size. (Depending on where you live.) Loosen the soil with a pitchfork and pull the roots by hand, using those that are 6 to 12 inches long and replanting the smaller ones. Save some cuttings for next year's crop, or simply leave the plants in the ground and mulch them for winter protection. Store unwashed harvested roots in plastic bags in the refrigerator as you would carrots.
Horseradish root is ground and used as a condiment with meat. The flesh  smells and tastes quite sharp. Grate washed and peeled roots with a ginger grater or in a food processor and serve fresh, or mix the grated roots with a small amount of vinegar and store in the refrigerator for up to six months.

Good luck!"

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