Raphanus sativus var. longipinnatus
60 days. Slice open one of these radishes to discover their secret hidden within. A deep pink center concealed underneath a green-white exterior is the splash of color you need on gray winter days. Grown in the fall to a size of 2-4” in diameter, these crisp, globe shape roots can be stored for fresh use throughout the winter. We also love to roast these roots to intensify their sweetness, which contrasts well with a crunchy, cool mix of winter salad greens. Warm days and cool nights intensify color, so plant in mid-summer for best results. Also called Chinese Red Meat or Roseheart radish. CC[[end tab]] [[start tab]]
Growing Instructions (for USDA Zone 5b):
Radishes prefer cool weather. Direct sow seeds outdoors 5/20 – 8/1. Plant seeds ½” deep, in rows spaced 18” apart. Sow 6 seeds per foot and thin to 4-6” apart. Days to germination: 3 - 6 (longer in cool soil). Keep seeds and plants consistently moist. Use crop rotation to avoid diseases (all brassicas). If necessary, cover with row cover fabric to protect against flea beetles and cabbage root maggots.
Harvest radishes when they reach full size. If hot, do not leave roots in the ground too long or they will become pithy. If temperatures are cool, radishes can remain in the ground longer. Use a garden fork to loosen the soil before pulling up. This type of radish stores well; it is very spicy and best eaten pickled or cooked.
Seed Saving Instructions for gardeners:
Biennial radishes need exposure to cold temperatures in order to flower and produce seed so plan to grow them to be mature in the fall. Radishes are insect pollinated and are cross pollinated – they will cross with all other radishes that are blooming nearby. Isolation distance: ½ mile. Minimum population size: 10-50. Dig radishes and identify best roots for replanting for seed (clip off leaves before replanting). Space 2 - 3 feet apart. Stake plants. Clip seed pods when seeds are fully ripe. Lay out to dry.[[end tab]]