Growing Radishes in Containers | Master Guide
Last updated: 05/21/20
Want to grow radish plants and harvest radishes that you can eat within a month. Yes!
Radishes are one of the crops that are easy to plant and just take a couple of weeks to be ready for consumption.
The radish plant (raphanus sativus) belongs to the Brassicaceae family together with broccoli, mustard, cauliflower, cabbage, and turnip. Growing radishes in containers come with a lot of benefits.
I will take you through all you need to know about growing radishes in the container. Its on the early vegetables every gardener should get in their pot. You will be enjoying a fresh radish crop for your spring and summer salads.
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Reasons to Grow Radishes in Containers
You have not only decided that you are going to grow radishes but also planting them specifically in the container full of potting soil.
This requires a little more effort, and you have to make sure you have genuine reasons for making your decision.
Here are a few of the reasons why you should grow radishes in containers.
- Utilizes your small space – A container will occupy a smaller area compared to when you plant directly in the traditional bed.
- Easy to monitor the growth of the crops – You will easily watch your radishes as they grow in the containers than you will do when they are far in the garden.
- Easy to take pest and disease control measures – Growing your radishes in a container reduces pest and disease attack. Furthermore, you can adjust the conditions to counter any pests or diseases that may invade your vegetables.
- You can grow your radishes all-round the year – It gives you a chance to provide the conditions for optimum growth of your vegetables artificially using a container by allowing you to plant them indoors.
Things to Keep in Mind with Container Gardens
Planning is important when it comes to any type of farming or gardening activities. Planting radishes in a pot is no different.
Look at the following aspects before planting your favorite vegetable.
Water is an important aspect when it comes to the growth of any root vegetable crop. Radishes require regular watering.
As you practice growing them in the containers, maintain regular depp watering to avoid cracking of the roots.
Lack of enough water will lead to the drying of your radish leaves and lead to the development of a sharp and woody taste.
Fertilizers are another essential thing to keep in mind as you grow your radishes in the containers.
Application of the right amounts and proper type of manure at a given time determines the difference between the vibrant growing radishes and the poorly growing radishes.
Excess fertilizer or wrong application may also affect the radishes negatively.
For instance, mix the slow-release fertilizer in your container pot.
You can apply aged manure, a third part compost, or granular fertilizer depending on your taste. Avoid too much nitrogen as it may cause lush heads.
You may also want to use a water soluble fertilizer for your radish plants. Just put in the water can the next time it needs watering
There are a few things you should consider before growing your radishes. This includes temperature, weather and location.
Radishes require cool temperatures for optimum seed germination. Planting your radishes in a pot that has a soil temperature ranging between 45 -88°F is recommended.
When it comes to location, consider positioning your container in a sunny place to speed up harvesting radishes. Planting your radishes where they get direct sunlight for 6 to 8 hours a day is necessary for optimum early growth.
Types of Radishes
There are several radish varieties. You can check on a few things about each type before settling on the one to use for planting. We added a few choices for radish seeds.
Our favorite radish varieties include:
1. Black Spanish
This is the larger of the radish plant varieties. Their coat is relatively black, which contrasts well with the bright white flesh.
These radishes plants grow up to around 3 inches in diameter. This requires larger containers than most radishes varieties.
However, do not be overwhelmed if this type of vegetables stays longer in the soil than others. These seeds take more time to germinate and grow when compared to other radishes.
Grab Black Spanish radish seeds here.
2. Watermelon Radish
Just like Black Spanish radishes, Watermelon Radish is more significant than typical garden radishes.
This type of radishes has a white or green coat with red flesh. These seeds also require a bigger room for optimum growth.
The bigger size, close to the egg-size, could encourage them to take a relatively longer time than the smaller varieties to grow to maturity.
Every person who normally doesn’t like radishes should at least try this one.
Buy watermelon radish seeds here.
3. French Breakfast
This is another radishes variety that has a mild taste compared to other types. The flavor is delicious and not too spicy.
This early radish grows mostly out of the soil, so you can easily check this vegetable’s size. Every radish lover should try these ones in their container pot.
You can grab some French Breakfast radish seeds for container planting here.
4. White Icicle
This one resembles a daikon variety. It is cylindrical with white color.
Every time we eat our harvest we taste a little heat.
These radishes grow to 5 to 6 inches long.
Grab some radish seeds here.
This one tastes sweet and crispy with their flavor like that of mustard. They are also a large-sized variety like the black Spanish and watermelon radish seeds.
Timely picking of these white radishes in the summer should be observed to avoid becoming woody with a pepper flavor.
Grab some seeds here
6. Cherry Belle
These are the most common radishes every gardener seems to grow. They get to maturity in 3 to 5 weeks from the planting date.
They are round in shape. Other varieties that can be categorized with Cherry Belle include Cherriette, Easter egg, and Pink beauty.
Find some radish seeds here.
Different crops do well in different soil types. Choosing the wrong soil to grow radishes will only waste your time and energy.
When it comes to radishes plants, make sure to use deep fertilized and well-drained soil. The soil should allow your crops & water to penetrate their roots easily.
For best results, grow radishes in a loamy soil with no stones to allow water to drain from the pot.
At all times, you should ensure that your soil retains moisture. Use two inches of mulch in the pot to improve the water retention for your plants.
You can improve your soil moisture retention by adding organic materials in case of windy weather or a hot climate. Some options include compost, aged manure, peat moss, and vermiculite and coconut coir.
Days to Germinate
Smaller sized varieties such as French Breakfast, cherry belle, and pink beauty take fewer days to germinate and grow to maturity compared to the larger-sized types.
All the varieties will take between 3 to 10 days (4 weeks) to mature & harvest.
Daikon takes the longest amounts of days in the soil before germinating. You might consider starting this radish closer to summer.
You should do harvest radishes often. You need to know how long your radish variety takes on average to grow to maturity. Picking the radishes late will lead to the formation of a strange flavor.
Some types will increase their peppery flavor as they become woody and cracked. Some steps to follow when harvesting:
- You uncover the top part of the root to check whether your crop is ready for harvesting.
- By holding the top part of the root, pull your crops carefully. Holding the leaves to pull them may break the plants leaves easily.
- Do separation of the leaves and the root immediately to avoid shriveling of the roots.
- Finally, you should wash and store your vegetables in a cool place, preferably your fridge for up to a few weeks.
Steps to Grow Radishes in Containers
- Materials. Before you plant radishes, you should determine and gather the right sized container and enough soil. Get the radish seeds and a shovel if you don’t like touching the soil. Seeds are available at your nearest garden shop or online.
- Filling the containers. Fill up the containers leaving a small unfilled space to avoid messing your area with excess soil around the pots.
- Seeds. Apply the seeds by sprinkling them over the soil. Avoid pushing them into the soil and water lightly. Generally, plant radishes about 1/2 inch deep to 1/2 inches deep. You don’t want to plant radishes more than 3/4 inches deep
- Soil. Consider covering the seeds with potting soil up to the top without compacting the soil. Compacting can delay germination and reduce an early harvest time.
- Thinning and spacing. After the seeds germinate in 3 to 10 days, thin out the seedlings to allow for spacing of 2 inches apart. For larger varieties, double the spacing to about 3-4 inches apart.
- Watering. Water your crops regularly. However, avoid drowning them as it will hinder the radish crop from growing. A good tip to help keep the water from evaporating is to use a mulch to cover them an inch or two deep. Two inches of mulch is plenty.
- Direct Sunlight. Ensure you position your radishes properly. Radishes grow in an area getting direct sunlight for around 6 to 8 hours daily. In case of windy conditions, you can use a plastic bag and tie it around your container. It is best to keep them out of the direct sun in the summer though
Growing radishes in pots is delightful and a tasty edible treat. It is the best way to use your small space around your house.
Their early harvest time and fewer demands make them one of my favorite vegetables to try out.
We plant them every year. Overlooking any of the optimum conditions for their growth will compromise an early harvest and even their taste.
Is growing radishes in containers indoors an option?
Yes, start with planting radish seeds in its final pot to avoid transplanting. Give it the optimal lighting and you can harvest a crop of them successfully indoors.
How long do radishes take to grow?
An early radish crop is ready in about 4 weeks in a container. Space the crops about two to fours weeks apart for a staggered vegetable harvest up until early summer.