Posts Tagged ‘radishes’

Radishes are me-firsters!

So this is how it’s going to be, isn’t it?  Every year, the radishes jump up and shout after a few warm days and some rain…”Ooh, ooh!  Pick me first!  I’m ready!  Over here!”

2009's First Radishes
2009′s First Radishes

 

May 2009 Backyard Garden

Gardening by numbers     

Gardening by numbers
Bed 1 is my wife's herb garden with an 8 foot row of cucumbers along the fence.  Just seeded this weekend.
Bed 1 is my wife’s herb garden with an 8 foot row of cucumbers along the fence. Just seeded this weekend.
Bed 2 has strawberries, three kinds of peppers and a couple eggplants I got at the farmer's market this weekend.
Bed 2 has strawberries, three kinds of peppers and a couple eggplants I got at the farmer’s market this weekend.
Bed 3 is seeded with sweet corn on the left side, white onion sets down the middle and melons on the right.
Bed 3 is seeded with sweet corn on the left side, white onion sets down the middle and melons on the right.
Bed 4 is seeded with bush green beans, beets and carrots.
Bed 4 is seeded with bush green beans, beets, sweet potatoes and carrots.
Bed 5 has rapidly maturing broccoli and was seeded a few weeks ago with beets and radishes.
Bed 5 has rapidly maturing broccoli and was seeded a few weeks ago with beets and radishes.
Bed 6 has broccoli, a zucchini, cabbages, a couple lettuce and my sons' 2x2 squares on the left corners.
Bed 6 has broccoli, a zucchini, cabbages, a couple lettuce and my sons’ 2×2 squares on the left corners.
Bed 7 has hybrid Big Mama tomatoes, supposedly a huge paste tomato.  The perimeter is planted with radishes.
Bed 7 has hybrid Big Mama tomatoes, supposedly a huge paste tomato. The perimeter is planted with radishes.
Bed 8 is planted with 8 heirloom tomatoes and has a perimeter ring of carrots.
Bed 8 is planted with 8 heirloom tomatoes and has a perimeter ring of carrots.
Bed 9 is a row of straw bales planted with lettuce and a couple extra herbs.
Bed 9 is a row of straw bales planted with lettuce and a couple extra herbs.
Bed 10 is an 8 foot wide narrow bed planted with a double row.  Cucumbers and snow peas will climb the lattice.
Bed 10 is an 8 foot wide narrow bed planted with a double row. Cucumbers and snow peas will climb the lattice.

Saving Seeds from Radishes

Radishes, bolted to seed.  About 4 feet tall.

Did you know that radishes will grow over 4 feet tall?

I planted a pot of radish seeds in the greenhouse this December. The seeds took a month or perhaps even 6 weeks to germinate in the cold temperatures. While they were growing, I was actually able to eat 4 or 5 small ones, pulled out in the name of “thinning” before the majority of the plants started to grow seed stalks. I guess the winter weather was a bit too much stress for them.

Instead of just throwing them out, I decided to let the radishes go to seed…as an experiment.

The seed stalks kept growing and growing and growing. After growing about 4 feet tall, the stalk in the center of each radish opened up a flower very similar to what a bolted broccoli looks like. Some of my radishes grew white flowers and some grew pink flowers, although all the seeds came from the same packet. Some are still flowering now, almost 6 months after putting the seeds in the ground.

Radish flower

Now that most of the flowers have died back, seed pods are beginning to grow. They look like tiny green beans at the moment. I’ll update this post when they have grown up and dried so I can harvest the seed.

Radish flower


FOLLOW-UP POST ADDED BELOW:


Here is an update to my previous post about saving radish seeds.

Dried radish seed pods

Dried radish seed pods

I let the radish growth die naturally and dry outside to a nice tan color.  I picked off the stems with the seed pods and had what you see above.

Green pod has turned light brown

Green pod has turned light brown

Just like a pea or a bean, each dry pod contains a few radish seeds.  Let’s open one up, shall we?

Hooray, seeds!

Hooray, seeds!

I expect the nice round ones are probably more viable than the flat wrinkled ones, since the ones I originally planted were all nice and round.

The verdict is that, yes, I can save radish seeds.  And until I absolutely need to, I won’t.  It’s a lot of extra work to get these seeds from a plant that would otherwise be picked in 25 or 30 days.  I’ll consider it knowledge tucked away for a rainy day.

Zone 5 Greenhouse New Year update

img_8418

The radish seeds I sowed in the greenhouse in a pot on December 5th started to show their heads last week.  Yesterday many had come up!

img_8441

There were several consecutive nights of 0 degree weather outside (in degrees fahrenheit, 32 below freezing), and the greenhouse got as cold as 19 by morning once, but the radishes seem to be doing well!

Shortly I’ll be moving some other seedlings out there…things I started inside under my grow lights. I could keep them inside and just grow them under the lights, but this is an experiment after all!  I want to see what works!

I’ll be VERY happy to start some Kale seeds this week!  Thanks very much to Robin for sending me those!  I owe you!

2009 Tentative Garden Layout

2009_planting_layout1

8 ft x 6 ft beds.  The lettuce at the top will be planted on/in 20 inch high bales of straw, thanks to a few awesome bloggers who taught me this trick in their posts.

I’m going to do a broccoli experiment this spring.  I’ll plant two whole beds of broccoli, one with a closer spacing than the other, all other things equal, and we’ll see how it affects yield:

2009_broccoli_comparison1

I’m guessing the bed with 35 plants will outperform the bed with 24, but it’s worth checking.  Maybe I’ll be surprised.

Radish harvest, green tomatoes, baby broccoli

I harvested these radishes tonight…the first time I’ve done enough “picking” in one night this year to use the word “harvest.”  Interesting how they can vary so much in size.  These were picked from a 2 square foot patch that I planted together with carrots.  I left almost as many radishes in the ground as I picked…the others didn’t seem ready yet.

There are baby green tomatoes (between the size of a pea and a marble) on my Gardener’s Delight cherry tomato and my Cold Set tomato.  There are flowers on the Rutgers and Super Marmande as well.  Very promising!

This little broccoli flower is only a little over an inch in diameter.  I’m hoping it grows up big and tasty along with all it’s friends.

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