Hello - I have tried growing multiple varieties of radishes (watermelon...

Asked June 12, 2013, 4:23 PM EDT

Hello - I have tried growing multiple varieties of radishes (watermelon radish and black spanish round) in both spring and fall, and I always have a problem where the greens grow well, but the root never forms a ball. It stays long and narrow with just a slight bulge, but not enough to even consider eating. My garden is a raised bed with a combination of native clayish soil and homemade compost. It is moderately heavy, but not nearly as heavy as regular native soil. The bed gets about 5 hours of direct sunlight. There are large maple trees nearby, but I removed all intruding roots before planting the radishes. I have also grown beets, which do tend to form a ball, but it seems that they form more slowly and reach a smaller maximum size than they should. I'd appreciate any advice you have. Thanks!

Montgomery County Maryland

1 Response

Take a soil test of your garden soil. It's possible that the pH is off or one or more nutrients are deficient. Thin your plants to the proper spacing (2-4 inches for radish and 3-4 inches for beets) and add more compost to improve soil structure. JT