Author Topic: Mild purple radishes  (Read 148 times)

Andrew Barney

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Mild purple radishes
« on: 2021-06-21, 12:17:20 AM »
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This summer I am growing a radish landrace, and adapting it to my garden. I planted seeds from as many varieties as I could locate including the Homegrown Goodness landrace, and a radish mix from my local seed store.

I planted about 350 feet of row. Out of those I selected for the following criteria

1-Quickest swelling roots.
2-Non-cracked roots.
3-Slowest bolting.
4-Odd or unusual plants

Examples of odd or unusual included a red tapered root, a purple root, and different shaped leaves. By the time I was done selecting I was left with 59 plants... They are just now starting to bolt. My work for the next few weeks is to meticulously weed the garden to remove radishes that I planted as row markers or that came up as volunteers.

Source: https://alanbishop.proboards.com/thread/5485/selecting-radish-landrace

Joseph,  I would be interested to hear how your radish landrace does now?

Today I started my own radish selection despite not intending to. I like mild radishes (which often happens to be the small purple rooted types). This year I planted only purple radish seeds from i think 3 commercial seed sources.

As has been the case with radishes in the recent past most of my radishes did not develop edible round roots and instead developed thin roots and went to early flowering or are now flowering. I am sick of these spindly early flowering radishes.

Today I noticed one well developed radish that is slow to flowering or bolting. I have noticed some others that may or may not have well developed radish roots but seem to be slow to bolting. I basically ripped out 90% or more of all the radishes in my raised garden bed. I would rather save seed from the one good radish than try to select from seeds next generation from plants that like to flower early with no edible roots. Im not even sure this radish is a mild tasting purple one. At this point I don't even care what color it is.

Steph S

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Re: Mild purple radishes
« Reply #1 on: 2021-06-21, 05:30:00 AM »
I'm with you, Andrew, in only liking mild radishes.  I had one called "Purple plum" some years ago which was mild enough for me. Mostly if I do grow radishes, I just give them away.
Last year I tried Watermelon radish and I don't think there was one root fit to eat.  All gnarly and thin.  I often have trouble with the red breakfast types as well, only rarely making a radish. 
I have some "White Icicle" seed, which I've used as a trap crop for wireworms by sowing in missed places or early pulls from the garlic beds.  Shockingly these neglected plants produced beautiful roots, I suspect they are hot though.  Wireworms didn't like.
Anyway I'll be interested in anything mild non-bolting and purple or not, if you develop it.
BTW, any take on resistance to flea beetle in radish?  The pest is seriously attracted to radish leaf here.

reed

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Re: Mild purple radishes
« Reply #2 on: 2021-06-21, 07:40:22 AM »
I have a pretty diverse radish landrace going in my garden. It pretty much takes care of itself reseeding when and where it wants. I only save seeds as a backup in case something wiped it out one year but so far it is doing fine on it's own. I don't eat a lot of radish roots except when a patch needs thinned. I grow it largely for ground cover and tillage. Instead of the overall population turning into something with stringy or tough roots as I've read will happen, I've found the opposite, especially with those that come up in summer or fall.

Along with the tillage aspect I've discovered that the seed pods are a much better food source that the roots. A single plant produces them in great abundance. I also like the more mild flavored ones so what I do is cull out any whose pods are very hot. Of course by then their pollen as intermingled with the others but seeds from the very hot ones are not part of the next generation.

Below is an example of what they have turned into when allowed to just do their own thing and harvested before the first hard freeze. All of them harvested at this time seem to be quite mild. *I don't mind the bolting one little bit, I count on it! Things like pictured below is an unexpected bonus.
« Last Edit: 2021-06-21, 07:47:26 AM by reed »

Andrew Barney

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Re: Mild purple radishes
« Reply #3 on: 2021-06-21, 07:56:36 AM »
Anyway I'll be interested in anything mild non-bolting and purple or not, if you develop it.
BTW, any take on resistance to flea beetle in radish?  The pest is seriously attracted to radish leaf here.

We'll I'll let you know if i'm able to develop anything that is mild and slow bolting here in my climate. There will be no guarantee that once selected for they will do well in others climates, but i figure they might do well for anyone else in cooler conditions than mine. This has been a very hot year already. My radishes this year are in a raised bed in partial shade. The raised bed soil may have too much woody fibers in it, thus sucking up the nitrogen. If that is the case they may be wanting to go to seed because of lack of nitrogen. They could behave differently in more natural soil. But i figure if i can select for them in these conditions they should do even better in better soil.

I'll keep an eye on flea beetle leaf resistance. I've had years where radish, beets, and turnip leaves were all eaten up (but perhaps others were fine?). In past years i never thought to pull out the affected ones and leave the others alone. But we do have a grasshopper problem here so it may be them instead of the beetles.

We do have a wild radish-type weed here that could cause problems like queens anne lace in carrots. I'm not exactly sure what they really are. They have purple flowers like a radish flower, they don't have large roots, and the seed pods are tiny but spicy like a radish. I assume they must be some sort of feral domestic radish that lost all domestic traits left over from former farmland from decades ago.

reed, yes I've eaten radish pods before, but i quite like the watery-ness of a root versus a pod. EFN now carries a long purple podded radish variety bred entirely for the pods to be like string beans.

reed

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Re: Mild purple radishes
« Reply #4 on: 2021-06-21, 08:18:35 AM »
reed, yes I've eaten radish pods before, but i quite like the watery-ness of a root versus a pod. EFN now carries a long purple podded radish variety bred entirely for the pods to be like string beans.
The pods on mine are quite juicy, great in salads but in years past I culled out some that got tough or stringy. Those big roots harvested in late fall or early winter are very juicy.  I don't remember those that started the initial landrace except that they were all pretty commonly available ones like cherry bell and French breakfast and a bunch of others.

Have never bothered to add in any specifically for pods like rattail, maybe I should do that. I like mine pretty good the way they are though, the pods are mostly only an inch or two long  but plump and crunchy.

Garrett Schantz

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Re: Mild purple radishes
« Reply #5 on: 2021-06-21, 05:34:47 PM »
Rattails are plump-ish. They seem to bolt faster than regular radishes - normally would be an advantage since they are grown for pods. Would be an issue if you want a root crop out of it.

I bought some Singara Rat's tail - along with Experimental Farm Network's Purple Podded Rattail. EFN's had a lower germination, but the pods are much longer and purple colored.

The flowers appeared to be larger than normal types.

Andrew Barney

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Re: Mild purple radishes
« Reply #6 on: 2021-07-01, 09:31:24 AM »
I'll try to grab a picture later,  but I have at least 3 radishes with nice plump purple roots and they still have not bolted! Looking good.

Glad I pulled up that 100 or so other radishes that bolted so quick. I'll be happy to skip eating these in order to get better seed to plant for next time. I easily removed 95% of the radishes I planted this spring. Its possible they went to flower because of overcrowding, but its hard to know for sure.
« Last Edit: 2021-07-01, 09:37:26 AM by Andrew Barney »