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Grow and Eat Radishes This Spring!

radishes growing in soil
Mar 25, 2024

Happy spring! Let’s start this new season with an update from our Food Hero test garden in Philomath, Oregon. Tyler, our garden coordinator, shares this:

Hello from our garden! The last frost in the Willamette Valley has passed. We can start planting cool-season veggies! We are all excited to plant lettuce, radishes, carrots, peas, spinach, broccoli and chard. All these veggies have different planting dates in March or early April. We will be practicing succession gardening this year. Each classroom will plant veggies during a different week. This will allow us to harvest a few times before summer. It will also allow everyone to get involved in the garden activities!

To learn more about succession planting, check out our tip sheet Help Your Garden Produce More Food: Succession Planting.

Grow Radishes

Tyler’s reminder about planting cold-season vegetables couldn’t have come at a better time. Sometimes it can feel like summer vegetables get all the attention. There are lots of options to choose from for early spring planting. Not sure where to start? We recommend radishes! Radishes are easy and quick to grow from seed. They are perfect for gardens of all sizes including small gardens, raised beds and containers. Even if you have very little space, you’re likely to find a spot for these. 

Plant radishes with a few easy steps:

  1. Choose a spot to grow in the sun or part shade.
  2. Sprinkle seeds over damp soil. If you’re planting in a container, the soil should be at least 6 inches deep. Choose a container with holes so that water can drain easily.
  3. Cover your seeds with about ½ an inch of soil.
  4. Water seeds after planting. Keep the soil moist. Try not to let it dry out completely.

Once you can see little green shoots appearing, your seeds are sprouting! When you can see a second set of leaves growing on each stem, then it’s time to thin your radishes. You want to have 1 to 2 inches of space between each radish plant. Use a clean pair of scissors to gently snip away extra plants so that the ones left have enough space.

Tyler also mentioned succession planting. You can try this with radishes. Instead of planting all your seeds at once, plant some every 10 days. Radishes only take 3 to 6 weeks to grow, so planting every 10 days means you’ll be able to keep harvesting for longer. To learn more about when to plant radishes in Oregon and which types we recommend, check out our tip sheet Growing in Oregon: Radishes. You will also find tips for when and how to harvest your radishes.  

Eat Radishes

Once you have harvested your radishes, you’re ready for the best part—eating them! Food grown at home can taste especially good because of all the care you put into growing it. But wherever you get your radishes, there are many different ways to enjoy them. You can eat them raw or prepare them in a recipe. Before you do, make sure to rinse them well. Did you know that cooking radishes makes the flavor more mellow and mild? We have three recipes to tell you about and radishes are the star of each! 

  • Radish and Cucumber Salad: crisp cucumbers, earthy radishes, creamy yogurt and flavorful garlic make this the perfect salad.
  • Braised Radishes: warm and tender radishes with a mellow flavor and a hint of sweetness.
  • Roasted Radishes with Peas: mild, slightly sweet, roasted radishes paired with bright and creamy peas, dill and lemon make the perfect side to any meal.

Two of these radish recipes can also be found in our Food Hero Monthly: Radish Basics. You’ll also find information about choosing radishes, the different types and flavors and some quick-fix ideas. 

Want to get kids excited about radishes? We have some other resources on our website that you might be interested in exploring. 

We hope you feel inspired to plant some radishes this spring or try some new radish recipes! 


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