Radishes usually serve as the spring quick-fix. It is a tradition in my garden to always plant some of these root crops. Depending upon the variety, you get a real quick turnaround – sow and then harvest in 30 days. This year I tried some in containers. Well, technically, five-gallon buckets. It seems a waste of soil considering the surface area of each bucket compared to the depth. I could get three times as many radishes from the same soil if planted in shallow but broad soil. Still, I’m after that quick fix. I will be using these buckets later for more plants that aren’t going to be planted yet, so it might work out. Radishes make a wonderful crop for impatient children, and if you sow them spaced out in 2 week intervals, you will have a steady supply.
The varieties I’ve sown this year include two of my favorite varieties. I am growing Giant of Sicily, Pink Beauty, Purple Plum, and White Hailstone. I have grown a number of radish varieties over the years, all of them enjoyable, but for flavor and mellow heat that doesn’t overpowers, the Pink Beauty and White Hailstone were perfect. I strongly recommend trying them.
Other varieties that I’ve successfully grown are Helios, a lovely yellow-gold radish, and the classic red radish, Saxa 2. These are very beautiful, consistently ball-shaped, and bright red like the store-bought varieties. I recommend the Saxa 2 if you want some nice red globes and the taste we all know and expect.
I have not yet tried any of the more exotic varieties or the Asian varieties, but want to grow a winter black type like this Runder-Schwarzer winter radish.
I am usually not too fond of eating radishes raw unless they are a modest part of a salad, but when roasted and with the juices starting to caramelize and a crisp outer brown, they are fantastic. I’ll feature them on my cooking blog one of these days.