For whatever reason, poor economy or other motivational factors, there is a lot of new gardeners out there.
Personally, I’m glad to see it. Of course, due to these newly rising interests in agriculture, the retail stores and other outdoor outlets, have raised the price on seeds. We won’t get into that, since things might get a little sloppy in such verbiage that would pertain to aggressive marketing methods and corporate bastards.
Okay, back to the subject at hand, I’ve recently been addressed with a question: Why didn’t my radishes produce?
This is a simple query, but it’s also a common mistake made by gardening newbies…
I asked in return, “what time of year was it? Was it hot weather?” They said, “uh, yeah…it was like late spring just before summer…when it is hot and everything is growing good.”
I shook my head and said, “Radishes are a cool-weather crop. For example, you live in Tennessee, so they need to be planted in early-mid spring or early-mid fall.”
The simple facts (for the most common varieties of radishes):
A radish seed germinates rather quickly, often times within 4 or 5 days. After they sprout, they usually mature in about 3 weeks. They are not a high-demand plant, so a mild, slow-release fertilize should suffice. If your ground is semi-fertile and broke up well or tilled, they shouldn’t need anything at all besides water & sunshine. They produce the best in a temperature range between 50 – 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Radishes do poorly when the air temperature is constantly above 75 degrees. In many cases, when planted in hot weather, the greens will grow quickly and the blooming/producing of seeds will be hastened while producing very few radishes in the process. Also, during the warm season, the radishes that do develop will often have a hot & spicy taste – this is not always a bad thing, depending on your preference. Radishes also possess numerous health benefits, especially when ate raw. Freshly picked radishes, when stored in the refrigerator, should last 3 weeks or more.
Some people eat the greens from the radish plant and they can be used as a substitute for mustard greens, for example. If peppery greens is what you’re after, then this subject matter doesn’t apply. But, if you’re seeking fresh, plump, tasty radishes, then take heed to the prior advice.
Garden Related Link: Natural Organic Fertilizer – Compost