A favorite early spring crop, radishes are a cinch to grow from seed, producing peppery edible roots in as few as 30 days. In climates with cold winters, you can enjoy a second crop in fall by planting seeds when the nights turn cool in early fall. In mild climates, it’s possible to harvest radishes through winter. Enjoy them in salads or with your favorite dip.
Garden Plans For Radish
Pair radishes with other cool-season crops for a delicious and productive early-spring garden. Great partners include spinach, lettuce, mesclun, and other greens; green onions; and peas. All of these can be planted from seed, or starts in the case of green onions, as soon as the soil can be worked in early spring. Cold snaps and a light dusting of snow rarely set them back. You'll enjoy a fresh salad, complete with a whole lot of crunch from radishes, 40 to 50 days after planting.
Radishes grow best in full sun and fertile, well-drained soil. Good drainage is key. Radishes languish and rot is slow-draining soil. If your yard retains water, plant radishes in a raised bed or container filled with quality potting soil. Sow seeds ½ inch deep and 1 inch apart in rows 6 inches apart in early spring as soon as the ground can be worked. To harvest through early summer, sow small amounts of seeds each week in early spring. Keep soil evenly moist and weeded to promote good growth. Thin the quick-to-emerge seedlings to 2 inches apart so roots have space to mature.
Maximize your planting space by planting radishes anywhere you plan to grow heat-loving plants, such as tomatoes and peppers. Radishes will mature before the warm-season plants bush out—and sometimes even before the warm-season plants are planted.
Harvest radishes when the roots are about the size of a large marble or appropriately sized for the variety you are growing. Radishes have mild flavor in cool weather but get spicier in hot conditions. If weather heats up hot, pull all radishes, remove tops, and store in refrigerator.
New Types of Radishes
Radishes, like many vegetable crops, are going back to their roots. You'll find many heirloom varieties of radishes in the market place. These varieties come in multiple shades of red and have a crisp, mild flavor and small size. Some popular heirlooms include 'Red Planet', 'German Giant', and 'Pink Beauty.'
More Varieties of Radish
This radish variety is ready to harvest 26 days from planting. The variety grows well either as a spring or fall crop.
'D'Avignon' radish produces elongated red radishes with a white tip in just 21 days. It is a traditional variety from the south of France.
This cultivar bears white-tipped, scarlet roots that have a sweet, mild flavor. Roots are ready in 23 to 28 days.
This variety is best grown as a fall crop. It produces 8- to 10-inch-long tapered white roots in 55 days from seeding.
'Nero Tondo' features round, black roots with crisp white flesh. The 2- to 4-inch-diameter roots take 50 days to mature.
This cultivar produces 4- to 5-inch-long tapered white roots. Despite their large size, they have a mild flavor. 35 days