Radishes are an easy crop to grow and cultivate. They are a good beginners crop, and should be attempted if you are new to gardening. Radishes grow best in a cool climate, making it a very successful crop around the lower mainland. The ideal air temperature for radish growth is between ten and eighteen degrees Celsius, making late spring and early autumn the best times to plant and harvest radishes. They grow rapidly and, in proper conditions, will only take three to four weeks to mature. They can take up to eight weeks to mature in colder temperatures. Since they mature so quickly, radishes can be continually planted and produced through their growing season. Plant more radishes every two weeks to continue their harvest. It can also be beneficial to thin your radishes to about an inch apart, this will allow the radishes to grow larger. Considering how quickly they mature, do not worry about pulling some radishes because you can always plant more while the temperature is still right. They are also great accompaniment plants. Their strong odour will repel many pests from your garden, such as cucumber beetles, tomato hornworms, and squash bugs. Radishes work well with other vegetable crops, and they seem to thrive when grown in close association with cucumbers, lettuce, peas, and chervil.
Radishes are consumed throughout the world. They are an ideal addition to salads because of their crunchy texture and various colours. You will find radishes that are red, white, yellow, purple, and even black. Radishes are low in calories, with only sixteen calories in every one hundred gram serving. Also, in the same size serving, radishes provide you with eighteen percent of your daily vitamin C intake. Normally only the swollen taproot is eaten, but the entire plant is edible and the leaves are sometimes steamed as a leafy green or used in soups and stews. The taproot itself, although usually eaten raw, can also be steamed to make a tasty vegetable side dish.
If you are in the Vancouver area, there are many restaurants mixing fresh radishes into their dishes. Fable, on West 4th, has radishes in their green salad. España, on Denman Street, has a beet, radish, and labnah salad and they also include radishes in their roast pork belly and octopus appetizer. For a more unique, radish centered dish, try Happy Valley Seafood Restaurant, on West Broadway, which serves fried radish cakes.
You can buy farm fresh radishes at nearly any farmer’s market around British Columbia right now. The UBC farmer’s market certainly has fresh radishes, as it is where I took this article’s photo this past weekend. You can also buy radish microgreens that are grown by SkyHarvest, Canada’s only certified organic urban farm. These microgreens are found at Choices Market, which has locations in Mount Pleasant, Kitsilano, Yaletown, and Commercial Drive. Local farms are also growing radishes right now. Stop by Cropthorne Farm in Delta, Forstbauer Family Natural Food Farm in Chilliwack, Howard Wong Farms in Matsqui, KBF Nursery and Farm Market in Abbotsford, Mary’s Garden in Surrey, or Ralph’s Farm Market in Langely to buy fresh radishes directly from the farmers.
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