If radishes were harder to grow, we might plant them more! Maybe because their fast and reliable growth makes them an ideal crop for children to plant, adults tend not to bother with them so much.  But if you are sowing green salad crops in autumn and early winter, why not enjoy some crunchy fresh radishes with them?

Sow the seed very thinly in drills about one centimetre deep and fifteen centimetres apart. The soil should be tilled finely with no clods.  Keep the soil moist and as warm as you can in winter, watering them when needed with water that has been stored a few days in the greenhouse to avoid chilling the plants.  Cover them with bubble-wrap on frosty nights, but remember to take it off again in the mornings.

Warm moist conditions and radishes are attractive to slugs, so take precautions against them: one slug can wipe out a whole row of seedlings in one night.

Some radish varieties are better than others for winter sowing under cover. Check the seed packet before you sow, but try some anyway – radishes are very accommodating and the seed is not expensive.

Pesto and radish bruschettas