Radishes are one of the easiest vegetables to grow. It’s a perfect growing choice for novice gardeners, taking only three weeks to mature – it’s easy to grow. With a crisp crunch and a mild peppery flavor, radishes are known for the delightful touch they bring to salads.
Here’s our complete guide on how to grow radishes, including harvesting tips.
When to Grow Radishes
Radish seeds are a cool-weather crop, meaning they’re best planted in the fall and spring. Begin to sow radishes once the soil reaches 40° Fahrenheit (prime germination temperatures occur between 55 – 75°F). Radishes have such a short maturation time that you can grow two rounds of crops per season.
Avoid growing in the summer — radishes don’t respond well to the heat. The heat will make them bolt (flower) and become inedible. Be sure that all harvests are complete before the days grow warm and long.
You can see if you are a fit for Radishes today, by simply visiting our Vegetable Garden Kits!
How long does it take to grow radishes?
Radishes will require 22 to 70 days to mature. Although they can be harvested earlier, the average maturation time for radishes is 4 – 6 weeks in the spring and 8 weeks in the fall — depending on the variety. Look for details on your variety for exact maturation times.
How much room do radishes need to grow?
One of the keys to growing radishes successfully is to give them space. If seedlings are grown too close together, they won’t become round. Either plant your radish seeds uniformly 6 inches apart or thin your radishes after they sprout.
What are the radish plant growth stages?
- Germination. Plant the seeds. Once seeds are planted, seedlings will emerge in five to ten days.
- Seedling. After the seedlings have emerged, be sure to thin the plants so there is one inch between them. At this point, radishes have only 2-3 leaves and are particularly sensitive to changes in temperature and moisture.
- Maturity. Radishes are at their full size (1 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter) and ready to be harvested.
- Post Maturity. If not harvested, roots will bolt and produce flowers. At this point, they become inedible and turn pithy.
How to Grow Radishes in Pots/Containers
The key to successful container growing is to choose the right container and the right soil. Be sure to choose a container that breathes well, drains, and is deep enough. Round containers actually work best for growing radishes.
Then, pick a spot that gets the right amount of sun (6 hours of full sun). If the weather grows warm, move the radishes to a cool location. This is one of the many reasons that growing radishes in container garden kits is so effective.
Radish varieties that are particularly successful are watermelon radish, french breakfast radish, pink radish, malaga violet, white hailstone radish, zlata radish, chinese rose, early scarlet globe, and easter egg radish. Spring radish varieties include cherry belle, cherry bomb, celesta, and rover.
Find the complete guide to container gardening here to get more in-depth tips.
Soil is the home of your garden. It’s imperative that it contains the right consistency and nutrients so that your radishes can grow deep roots and thrive.
Radishes need loose, well-drained soil to allow the roots to expand easily. They grow best with a pH of 6.5 – 7.0 but are quite hardy and will tolerate a variety of soil types. If growing in a container, use a well-draining potting mix. Otherwise, be sure to loosen your soil before planting.
It’s important that you actively add nutrients to your soil. Mix in compost and other organic material to keep your soil rich and your radishes thriving.
Too much water can cause rot, but not enough water causes splitting. Radishes need consistently damp soil throughout the germination process (5-10 days).
Keep the soil evenly moist throughout its grow, but do not soak it. Radishes grow best if the soil always feels wet to the touch and never completely dry.
Ensuring your garden gets enough sunlight is imperative for fostering good growth. Radishes need at least 6 hours of full sun per day; however, they do tolerate partial shade. In fact, providing a good amount of shade may extend the growing season of radishes.
If growing in a garden bed, sow radish seeds 1/2 inch deep and 1 inch apart. If growing in a container, sow your radishes at least 6 inches deep.
How to Grow Radishes Indoors
Believe it or not, growing radishes indoors is possible. It might be unusual, but you can have big success — especially in early spring crops. When growing indoors, it’s essential to find a sun-drenched location on next to a window. Additionally, be sure that your containers are large enough for growth.
Sow only a few radish seeds when growing indoors. If you plant about 6 seeds in a medium-sized container, you may not have to thin your garden at all. If you do plant too many, be sure to thin well — too many radishes fighting for soil space will cause poor growth all-around.
Radishes grow so quickly that pests and diseases are not often an issue. If pests appear, use an organic pesticide. Check for disease daily and treat them with fungicides like neem oil or sulfur if needed.
How to Harvest Radishes
Harvesting is the most thrilling part of the grow — it’s when you reap the rewards of your hard work.
Follow these harvesting tips for the best success and tastiest radish harvests.
- Radishes are ready to harvest as soon as 3 weeks after planting. Harvest when the roots are 1 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter at the soil surface.
- To harvest, pull, and twist from the base of the greens.
- Do a test run! Before harvesting the entire garden, pull a single root out, and test it.
- Don’t leave the radishes in the ground after the maturation date. They will become bitter and pithy and eventually bolt.
- Harvest from dry soil after a few days without rain. Too much moisture can cause harvested radish roots to rot.
How to Store Radishes
First, cut the tops and the root tail off. Then, wash and dry them thoroughly. Either eat immediately or store inside plastic bags in the fridge. Properly stored, radishes will store for 10 – 14 days in the refrigerator.
Pro Tip: Keep the leafy green tops right above where the stems meet the root. Don’t wash them and put in a sealed plastic bag in the fridge until you’re ready to use them. They taste excellent sautéed in olive oil!
How to Enjoy your Fresh Harvest
Nothing tastes better than a freshly harvested radish. Their spicy flavor and juicy crunch ensures you’ll be thrilled with your new harvest.
Slice and use in salads, dice and use them as a topping for tacos, or simply salt and bite into the crunch. Cooked, radishes develop a sweet tender flavor you’ll want to devour.
Try roasting your radishes in this garlic and ginger roasted radish recipe.