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Beginner’s Guide to Growing Radishes

As a beginning gardener, there are many plants you can try your green thumb with, including radishes. Read along to learn and see if growing radishes could be your thing!

Radishes are an old homesteading staple because they’re one of the first vegetables you can grow in the Spring and they’re very forgiving.

growing radishes from seed

Why Radishes?

First and foremost they’re incredibly easy to grow. Simply throw the seeds in some soil and forget about them for a few weeks.

They are one of the first vegetables you can grow in the Spring as they tolerate frost well.

Radish greens are also edible and can do the work of “tilling” hard clay for you in the Spring, helping you prep your garden beds for the warm-weather crops without any work from you – I love homesteading hacks like this.

They can also be grown as a forage crop for livestock.

As for human consumption, radishes help control damage to our red blood cells.

It is high on fiber which helps improve digestion and regulates bile production.

Radishes help guard your heart as they are high on vitamin C and folic acid.

Another great benefit that radishes offer is its ability to control blood pressure and improve our immunity.

how to grow radishes from seed

Things to Consider Before Growing Radishes

Growing radishes is incredibly easy. They make a great first crop for kids too!

Radish seeds are best planted in Spring and Fall, while it gets the worst growth in summer as the temperature gets high.

Before getting into planting radishes make sure to prepare your plant site first. Radishes love a sunny place to grow.

Placing them where shade is abundant will cause them to grow larger leaves and less on their root.

To make the best out of your radishes, rotate their location every three years. This way, you can avoid diseases from affecting your radishes.

For companion planting, try planting radishes close to beans, beets, tomatoes, squash, mint, lettuce, cucumbers, parsnips, chervil, spinach and peas, but away from potatoes and hyssop.

sliced radishes on a salad

Planting Radishes

The best soil temperature to sow your seeds would be around 40 degrees F range.

For Spring, start sowing around 4-6 weeks before the last frost.

Sow one seed about half an inch deep in trenches that are 12 to 18 inches away from each other.

Allow this distance between your seeds in order to prevent clustering.

You can sow seeds every week in order to have a steady supply of fresh Spring radishes, too. You can sow seeds in late Summer and early Fall, too. 

We get our radish seeds from Monticello and have had great luck with them!

Tending Radishes

Because radishes grow rather quickly, you don’t really need to worry about cultivation or weeding.

If weeds appear, weed them carefully.

Be sure to keep your eyes out for root maggots and clubroots. To avoid root maggots, spread diatomaceaous earth around the plants while they are still seedlings.

Clubroots can be tricky. To deal with clubroots, you will need to pull and discard the plants affected as soon as possible, since this is the only way to prevent the spread of this disease.

Make sure to keep your soil moist, but not too wet. When facing dry conditions, mulch around the radishes in order to make sure that moisture is well kept around them.

sliced radishes on a sandwich

Harvesting Radishes

Radishes are ready for harvest around three to four weeks after sowing!

Radishes are easy to harvest, just like how easy they are to plant, too. Once the roots are around an inch in diameter on the soil’s surface, they are ready for harvest.

Before pulling out everything, you might want to pull one out first to test before picking out everything else.

Make sure to harvest radishes on time to prevent roots from turning woody and bitter!

Spring and Summer varieties are best harvested quickly to avoid rapid deterioration of both taste and texture.

Always wash radishes before use and pat dry to prevent rot. Separate the leaves and roots to have a longer shelf life.

As much as they can add taste and flavor to the kitchen, they make great companions for the garden, too!

Start your gardening adventures now and have fun learning more about the amazing things you can do with your backyard!

If you love radishes, here’s what you need to know:

Growing Radishes

Soil pH

6.0-7.0

Sunlight

6 hours or less

Water

1 inch per week

Planting Time

Direct sow every 2 weeks, starting 4 weeks before the last frost

Compatible With

Tomatoes, Peppers, Cucumbers, Peas, Lettuce, Beets, Melons

Avoid Planting With

Potatoes, Hyssop

Spacing

Direct sow in a row, thin to every 2 inches

Maintenance

Low/no maintenance. Weed and water.

Harvesting Fruit

Harvest in 35-40 days. The older/bigger the radish, the stronger the flavor. If you like mild, harvest earlier, if you like spicy or are going to pickle them, harvest later.

Saving The Seeds

Harvest the seeds when the pods have dried and are browned. Pull up the entire plant and hang it to dry in a cool, dark place. Harvest the seeds from the pods.

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Cat

Sunday 14th of March 2021

Tapping on 'How to grow squash' is actually 'How to grow radishes'. Is growing squash listed some other place?

Nel ward

Friday 20th of April 2018

You can roast radishes in the oven, put them together with other vegetables like carrots, pumpkin, sweet potatoe etc. The taste is a lot more subtle after roasting, very nice giv3 it a try

Lauren Dibble

Friday 20th of April 2018

I’ll admit, I’ve never had them this way! I’ll definitely try them! Thank you for sharing!