Radishes are a versatile and extremely fast growing vegetable which can add colour and punch to a summer salad as well as serving a useful purpose as a catch crop in the vegetable or even ornamental garden - a neat row of fresh radishes with ruby red root bursting through the soil is for many people the picture perfect image of a traditional vegetable plot.
Where To Grow
Radishes thrive in soil that is rich in organic matter and retains moisture well - If the ground has not been previously manured then plenty of garden compost before sowing will help. Choose an open sunny site, although radishes can cope with dappled shade in the height of summer which makes them ideal for growing amongst other crops where there is room.
For an early crop, sow in February into soil prewarmed under a Cloche or Tunnel - continue to protect the seedlings until Late March.
Sow thinly 1 cm deep with 15 cm between rows and thin as plants develop. Continue to sow from March to August for a successional crop - a row every 2 weeks will give you a good continuous supply and they are easy to squeeze in around other slower growing planting.
Growing In Containers
Radishes are an ideal crop for growing in planters or containers - any pot will work and they don’t need a great depth of soil but a Vegetable Planter or an Easy Table Garden are perfect for growing a few radishes amongst herbs and baby leaf lettuce for an easy salad harvested right on the doorstep.
Radishes are a very easy crop to care for - just keep them well watered (especially if they are in containers) and weed free.
Harvesting & Storage
Pick radishes before skins thicken and they start to toughen up - pull the larger roots first and leave the rest of the crop to grow. Late crops can be protected from the cold under a Easy Fleece Tunnel.
Pests & Diseases
Radishes are prone to the same pests and diseases as cabbages - Flea Beetle and slugs are normally the main issue - a Slug and Snail Catcher will help prevent damage to the crop and flea beetle damage to the leaves should not impact to badly on your harvest.