Grow a garden filled with the unusual Watermelon Radish, from freshly harvested Raphanus sativus seeds. Watermelon Radish originates from China and differs from the traditional red radishes. It's outer skin is a gray-white, while it's inner flesh is a vibrant rosy red. The roots measure roughly 3" to 3.5" in diameter and are mildly sweet in flavor. Watermelon Radish is used in many culinary dishes and goes great in salads as well.
Watermelon Radish is grown as an annual crop. Annuals will produce crops within a single growing season, later dying with the first killing frost. If allowed to bolt, the plants will produce fresh seeds which can be used to regrow Watermelon Radishes the following year.
Sowing The Seed
Radish plants are cool weather crops, so the seeds are best established directly outdoors, 8 to 10 weeks prior to the first frost. Start be clearing your sowing area of all unwanted plant life & weeds. Turn the dirt, or replace it with fresh, new soil. Sow your seeds at a depth of 1/2” under topsoil, in groups of 2 or 3, in a triangle formation.
Because Radish plants enjoy the cooler temperatures of the Autumn season, you should make sure that temperatures stay between 55F and 80F. Plant them in an area that will receive full sunlight for the majority of the day. The soil should be rich, but also well drained. To increase drainage, try adding a bit of light compost to areas containing hard, compact soil. Water daily in the morning, but avoid overwatering as this can cause your Radishes to become waterlogged.
Germination & Growth
Radish seeds will begin to show signs of life within as little as 7 to 14 days after sowing. The plants will grow 4 to 6 inch tops, producing 2 inch, purple colored roots. The seeds, as explained above can be sown in groups of 2 or 3, while spacing each group roughly 4 inches apart from one another. The rows will be spaced about 8 inches apart. Harvest when young, just as the roots measure 2 inches in diameter.