How to Grow Radish from Seed to Harvest
You want to grow radish on your balcony or your garden? Great! Then this article is exactly for you.
I outline all you need to grow your radish from seed to harvest step-by-step.
In the end, I give you some general additional tips on how you can grow your radish in an optimal manner.
Table of Contents
Radish Plant Profile
|Size (Height, Spread)||6 to 12 inches tall and 5 to 8 inches wide.|
|Climate||Radish grows best in moderate to cool climatic zones with temperatures between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.|
|Sun Exposure||Radish grows best with a healthy mix between shade and sun.|
|Soil Requirements||Radish plants prefer rather neutral soil with a pH of 6.5 – 7.|
|Country of Origin||China.|
|Growing Difficulty||Easy. Even beginners can get decent radish yields.|
|Perennial?||No, radish is harvested within the first growing year.|
|When should you start?||Between April and July in moderate climatic zones.|
|Expected Yield & Harvest||You can harvest one radish crop from each plant.|
|Time from Seed to Harvest||30 to 40 days to grow radish from seed to harvest.|
|Pests & Diseases||Flea Beatles, Cutworms, Loopers, Aphids, Harlequin Bugs, Alternaria Blight, Clubroot, Downy Mildew, Fusarium Wilt.|
|What to do with it?||You can make nice salads or soups out of your radish.|
What Types and Varieties of Radish can you grow?
There are many different types of radish you can grow at home.
In the following, I give you a list of the most popular radish varieties to grow:
- French Breakfast radish
- Malaga Violet radish
- Pink radish
- White Hailstone radish
- Zlata radish
- Cherry Belle radish
- Daikon White radish
- Round Black radish
- White icicle
- Chinese rose
- Watermelon radish
While I prefer to grow French Breakfast radish since they provide decent yields, growing the other radish varieties can also be quite a lot of fun.
In fact, if you are a beginner and have never grown radish before, you should definitely try growing many different radish varieties so that you can figure out which variety you like most.
You can also just use a radish seed mix and you are good to go.
When should you start to grow Radish?
Depending on the radish variety you want to grow, you can start out as early as mid of April or you can also start growing your radish as late as the end of July.
In fact, radish doesn’t take too long to grow from seed to harvest and you should just make sure that your growing efforts fit into your timetable.
Hence, don’t worry too much about the exact date for growing your radish. You just have to make sure that the temperatures outside do no longer fall below the freezing mark before you start growing your radish outdoors.
How long does it take to grow Radish from Seed to Harvest?
You can grow your radish from seed to harvest quite fast. In fact, it will often only take between 30 and 40 days until you can harvest your radish.
Of course, this also depends on the overall conditions outdoors and also on your skill level.
Thus, even if it takes a little bit longer to grow your radish from seed to harvest, don’t worry about it.
In fact, growing your own vegetables is about loving the process and not about just the yield.
Therefore, the longer it takes, the longer you can enjoy the radish growing ride 😉.
What is the best Climate to grow Radish?
Most radish sorts are rather tolerant towards different climatic conditions.
While radish usually grows best in moderate climatic zones, it can also be planted in hotter or colder climates as long as those climate zones are not too extreme.
Hence, don’t worry too much about whether you live in the right climatic zone to grow radish. Chances are that you will be just fine.
What Temperatures do Radish like?
While the optimal temperature range for growing radish is between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit, radish is rather tolerant to swings in temperature.
In fact, it doesn’t really matter if it is a little bit hotter or colder.
As long as it is no longer freezing outside when you seed your radish and you don’t live in the tropics, temperatures will be suitable to grow radish.
What do you need to grow Radish?
You don’t need a lot to grow radish. However, there is some equipment I advise you to get in order to provide the optimal growing conditions for your radish:
- Big flower pots (the bigger, the better; only necessary if you don’t have a garden to grow your radish)
- Radish seeds
- Fertilizer (I recommend natural fertilizer; alternatively, you can also make your own fertilizer for which I give you the instructions below)
- Potting soil
- Slug fence
- Watering can
- Garden shovel
What Yield can you expect when you grow Radish?
Now that you know what equipment is necessary to grow radish, it is time to talk about what yield you can expect from growing radish.
In general, for most radish varieties, one radish seedling will only produce one radish crop.
However, since each radish plant will not take too much space to grow, you can still produce a decent amount of radish per square foot.
Hence, don’t be deterred by the fact that you will only get one radish from each plant. If you do it right and have the space in your garden, you can still produce decent radish yields.
Also always remember that growing your own plants is not only about the yield, it’s about loving the process.
Thus, if you don’t get high yields from your growing efforts, don’t be disappointed.
You can still enjoy a great time gardening which is in my opinion much more important than the harvest itself.
What Plants should you grow with Radish?
If you want to learn more about what plants to grow with radish, make sure to check out my article that shows you all the good and bad radish companion plants.
Why should you grow your own Radish?
Many people also ask me why you should actually even bother with growing your own radish.
In fact, it is much easier and often also cheaper to just buy radish in the store instead of growing your own radish on your balcony or in your garden.
However, there are several other benefits of growing your own radish.
First, you can have a really good time by growing your own radish. In fact, it can be quite interesting to see your radish grow and also the progress your radish plants will make each week.
I personally love seeing my plants grow and just next to them also gives me a feeling of peace.
Second, by growing your own radish, you can also avoid buying radish that might be contaminated by harmful substances.
In fact, if you buy radish in conventional stores, they are often contaminated with some level of pesticides and herbicides, which can lead to serious health effects in the long run.
By relying on your own radish, you can make sure that you grow it in a completely natural manner.
Third, growing radish and other plants can also help you to reduce your overall stress level. It can be quite relaxing to grow your own plants and to see them grow.
Hence, if you suffer from excessive stress right now, you should definitely grow your own plants since it can help many people to deal with stress.
Fourth, you can also learn a lot about natural processes. In fact, many people simply do no longer know how their food is produced.
They just get it from the store and don’t care about where it is coming from.
However, it is quite important to understand how much effort is actually necessary to grow your own crops since we will value our food much more due to that and will be more eager to avoid food waste.
Consequently, due to all those reasons, growing radish can make quite a lot of sense, even though it might not make sense from a purely financial perspective.
Growing Radish: Step-by-Step
1. Select a Site for your Radish Plants
Before you can actually start with your radish growth project, you first have to decide where exactly you want to grow your radish.
In the following, I answer all questions that are important to find the optimal location to grow your radish in your garden or on your balcony.
Does Radish like Sun or Shade?
While radish likes a few hours of sun each day, you should not select a site to grow your radish which doesn’t provide any shade at all.
In fact, a healthy mix between shade and sun works best to grow most radish varieties.
What are the Soil Requirements of Radish?
Most radish varieties prefer rather neutral soil with a pH value of around 6.5-7.
Thus, if you just get potting soil from your local garden center and mix it with the soil from your garden, you will be just fine.
Also make sure that you loosen up the ground a little bit since radish crops grow below the soil surface and to grow properly, those crops need the soil to be as loose as possible.
How much Space do Radishes need?
Radish plants stay rather small and compact. Consequently, they don’t need too much space to grow in an optimal manner.
However, I still would suggest that you give each radish plant at least one foot of space to each direction.
By doing so, your radish plants don’t have to compete with each other for nutrients or sunlight.
Hence, before actually planting your radish, makes sure that you have enough space in your garden to grow a decent number of radish crops.
Should you plant Radish in a Pot or in the Garden?
Both options are possible. If you grow your radish in pots, you will be more flexible to change the location if you figure out that the current location will not be optimal to grow your radish.
However, please also note that you will need pretty big pots for growing radish and you will also not be able to plant significant numbers of radish in a pot.
Therefore, if you really want to scale your radish growing project, you should definitely plant your radish in your garden since you will just be able to grow more plants there.
2. Plant Radish Seeds
Now that you have a better understanding of where to plant your radish, it is time to really get into the actual seeding process.
Should you buy Radish Seeds or Seedlings?
The first question you have to answer for yourself is whether you should get radish seedlings from the garden center or whether you should just grow your radish seedlings by yourself.
I would definitely recommend growing your own radish seedlings since only then will you get the full growing experience.
Moreover, growing your own seedlings can also be quite a lot of fun and it is actually not difficult at all.
In fact, I will show you how to grow your radish seedlings step-by-step in the next chapters of this article.
Should you buy Radish Seeds or produce Seeds by yourself?
If you have never grown radish before, you just need to get your radish seeds from an internet vendor or from the local garden store.
In fact, only after your first radish growth project, you will be able to win your own seeds.
However, even then, winning radish seeds is not that easy since you will have to leave some radish crops in the ground instead of harvesting them and you will also only get a few seeds out of each radish crop.
Hence, in this case, you may really want to rely on getting radish seeds from a store instead of producing them by yourself since it is simply quite labor-intensive to produce radish seeds.
How to plant Radish Seeds
When your seeds from your seed company or your garden center arrived and the climatic conditions are right, it is time to actually plant them into the ground.
If you want to grow your radish in your garden, you just need to dig a hole for each seed and just fill this hole with a mix of your garden soil and potting soil from the store.
Make sure that the soil mix is loose enough so that your radish crops can develop in an optimal manner.
You should also give each radish plant around 3 feet of space so that they can get enough sunlight and nutrient to grow well.
After you dug your seeds around two inches deep into the filled holes, you just have to cover them and water your seeds.
If you grow your radish in a pot, you just have to fill it with potting soil, place the seeds with sufficient space and also cover your seeds with soil.
Whether you plant your seeds in your garden or in a pot, make sure to water them in both cases on a regular basis.
In fact, if the soil dries out, your seeds will not get enough water and your seedlings inside the soil may die off.
How long does it take to see the first Radish Seedlings?
Depending on the radish variety and also on the overall outside temperatures, it will take around one week until you finally see the first seedlings reaching the soil surface.
However, don’t get impatient and allow your radish seedlings around one month to reach the soil surfaces.
If you don’t see seedlings after one month in some spots in your garden, this basically means that the seed will not turn into a seedling anymore.
In such a case, you can plant new radish seeds on those spots in order to use the space in your garden in an optimal manner.
How to protect your Radish Seedlings
Since you will grow your radish seedlings outdoors, you have to protect them against potential attackers who may want to feed on them.
Especially snails can be a big problem outside and you should definitely install a snail fence in order to deter snails from eating your plants.
Moreover, slug fences are not only useful to keep away snails, they may also deter other animals who may try to eat your seedlings.
Thus, installing a snail fence or other devices is a must to protect your seedlings.
However, don’t use chemical substances to protect your plants.
On the one hand, those substances will not be healthy for you.
On the other hand, those substances will also hurt many helpful insects and other animals.
Instead, try to make your radish growing experience as eco-friendly as possible.
3. The Radish Growth Process
After you raised your radish seedlings and protected them against potential attackers, the hardest part and the majority of manual work is done.
Now it is time to enjoy the actual growth process of your radish.
However, this doesn’t mean that you don’t have to put any work into your growing project.
There are still some things to consider for the later stages of your radish growing project which I show you in the following.
Should you prune your Radish Plants?
There is no need to prune your radish plants at all. In fact, you will be much better off by just letting your radish grow and by letting do nature its work.
While some people claim that pruning plants is a good idea, I strongly disagree in many cases.
In fact, most of the time, pruning will interfere with natural processes and this is not a good idea in general.
Especially for growing radish, pruning will do much more harm than good.
Do you have to pollinate your Radish Plants by Hand?
You also don’t have to pollinate your radish. Just let it grow and you will see pretty decent results if you follow all the steps in this article.
How to stake your Radish Plants
Since radish plants stay rather small and compact, there is also no need to prune your radish at all.
In fact, radish plants are stable enough to resist outside conditions most of the time and there is no need to stabilize them.
4. The Radish Harvest
After one to two months, your radish will be ready to harvest.
When should you harvest your Radish?
It is fairly simple to determine the optimal harvesting time for your radish. You will often see how big the crops already are since they will partly grow above the soil surface once they get bigger.
Hence, you will see the diameter and when the diameter of your radish crops is big enough, it is time to harvest them.
Of course, you don’t have to harvest all your radish crops at the same time. You can just harvest one crop, taste it and if it is ripe, you can harvest the rest.
How to store your Radish?
Although you can store your radish in dark and dry places in your home, I would not recommend storing your radish for who long since it will lose vitamins and will also not taste that good anymore after a while.
Instead, make sure to consume your radish in time to get the best out of your crops.
What should you do with your Radish?
While you can just use your radish for salads, you can also use it for several other dishes. You can even make a radish soup or pickle them.
Or, if you are a person who likes to try new things, you can also invent completely new radish dishes. I’m sure you will find out how to use your radish in the best possible manner 😉.
Radish Plant Care Tips
I already gave you a step-by-step approach on how to grow radish at home.
However, some general things are still missing and I give you some additional information on those topics in the following to make your growing experience even better and more enjoyable.
How often should you irrigate Radish?
Your radish plants need to be watered on a regular basis in order to grow in a healthy manner.
However, too much water is not good for them either and you have to balance your watering efforts somehow.
On hot summer days, you will probably have to water your plants on a daily basis while they will need less water in cooler periods of the year.
If you are not sure whether your radish plants need water or not, just put your finger into the soil next to your plants and see if it is still wet.
If it is wet, you don’t have to water your plants. If it is dry, you should water your radish.
Over time, you will get a pretty good feeling of when it is actually time to water your plants since you will get much more experienced and your intuition will tell you when to irrigate your plants.
At what Time of the Day should you water your Radish Plants?
Many experts claim that the best time to water your plants is in the early morning.
While this might be true, I personally haven’t seen too much difference and in my honest opinion, you should just water your plants whenever they look like they need it.
Hence, don’t rely too much on a specific time of the day to water your plants but rather do what’s actually good for your plants.
How often should you fertilize your Radish Plants?
Radish plants don’t need much fertilizer. In fact, if you prepared your soil like mentioned before, there will actually not be a real need to add additional fertilizer.
Many people make the mistake to use far too much fertilizer and do much more harm than good since too much fertilizer can harm the roots of your plants.
What kind of Fertilizer should you use for your Radish Plants?
If you really want to fertilize your radish plants, make sure to use natural instead of chemical fertilizer in order to protect the soil and the local flora and fauna. You can either buy your natural fertilizer or produce it by yourself.
In fact, it is quite easy to produce your own natural fertilizer from stinging nettles. Just collect some and put them into a bucket full of water.
After a few days, remove the plant material and you can use this stinging nettle liquid as natural fertilizer by just adding it to your watering can.
Should you use Pesticides or Herbicides for Growing Radish?
No, you should never use chemical pesticides and herbicides since those substances can be quite harmful to our environment.
They also reduce the populations of many helpful insect species like bees.
Hence, to protect those species, make sure to remove weeds by hand. As a pesticide, you can use your stinging nettle liquid.
You heard right! 😉 Stinging nettle liquid is not only great as fertilizer, it can also help you as pesticide if you just spray it on your radish plants.
Most pests don’t like the taste of stinging nettle liquid at all and will vanish after a while.
If you want to get even more information about pest control, you should also have a look at how to control radish plant diseases and pests.
What’s left to say?
Thanks for reading this long radish growing guide! I know it was a pretty long article but in order to give you all the information that is necessary to grow radish from seed to harvest step-by-step, I simply was not able to make it even a little bit shorter. I hope you got all the information you needed.
If you liked the article, make sure to share it with your family and friends to motivate them to also grow their own radish at home.
Also feel free to check out my growing radish FAQ section to get even more information on how to grow radish.
You can also simply use the search function in the menu bar to find what you are looking for.
About the author
My name is Andreas and I’m really passionate about our environment and also about growing plants. In fact, I have grown several different plants over many years. I love to see my own plants grow and always try new things.
In my blog posts, I want to share my experiences with you so that you can become successful in growing various different plants, even if you are still a beginner right now.