Radish and PotatoesJanuary 31, 2022
Radish is a 45-60 day crop and came from Japan. It first came to India 3,000 years ago.
It has less food value than potato, although it is rich in mineral salts and is good for the blood.
It is a general purifier.
It is not easily digestible, but it helps digestion because it stimulates saliva secretion.
It can be eaten raw, cooked, pickled, etc.
The leaves of mustard and radish are similar, but all varieties of mustard have yellow flowers while radish has white flowers.
The green leaves of radish (mula shák) are a good food, but the green leaves of mustard (sarśe shák) are not. Where there is a dense growth of radish plants, they should be thinned out. The leafy off-cuts can be eaten as a vegetable (mula shák).
The varieties of radish include:
- summer season
- rainy season
Radish seeds are larger than mustard seeds and can be used to produce oil, although they are not usually used for this purpose.
Radish oil is pungent, like mustard oil. Radish oil cake makes a good manure. If radish tops are planted, they will produce seeds and flowers. The summer variety of radish can also be grown with áus paddy.
Radish can be grown as a blended crop with potato and other crops. The root is not wide, so it can be grown with a tuber such as potato without disturbing it.
The soil for growing radish should have a very light texture. Sandy alluvial soil is good, but it should contain a lot of calcium.
Radish require 1 tilling. In Guazipur and Juanpur radish grows quite large. Radish seedlings should be planted in such a way that the roots go straight down.
Radish seeds can be grown in 2 ways:
- If soil is available, cut off 1.5 inchese from the top and plant it in wet soil.
After some time plenty of flowers and seeds will grow.
- If soil is not available, cut off the top of the radish as above, but hang the top upside down in a sheltered place.
Gouge a cup-shaped cavity in the pulp and pour water into it.
When the water dries up, wash the pulp and refill it with water. After some time, flowers and seeds will grow profusely downwards.
Radish seeds should not be sown within a radius of three miles from where they were produced. Seeds should always be brought from outside the locality, otherwise the radish crop will be prone to disease.
Potato and Radish
Potato and radish crop rotation should be done according to the following system:
- Áshvina to Agraháyańa – Early potato or 60 day potato.
The best system for preparing the field for potato is to plough the field 16 times:
- 12 times by tractor
- 4 times by power tiller.
Fertilizers like NPK (nitrogen, potassium and phosphate) may be used, either 20:20:20 or 28:28:0 (and then add potash) about 500 kg per acre.
Early potatoes are planted in rows 20 inches apart.
Between the potatoes there should be any variety of early radish. Radish does not have such wide roots. The main root comes down in such a way that it does not affect the potatoes.
Along with these some small spices such as kalo zira, mongrela, fenugreek, five spices, cumin, small ajwain, celery, etc. may be planted. Ajwain is “jamani” in Saḿskrta, “jamain” in Urdu and “Trachyosparmum amni” in Latin.
In the irrigation canal between rows of potatoes, winter pumpkin, winter brinjal (Varanasi varieties), anise, coriander, cumin, and/or capsicum should be grown. The canal is not dug until the potatoes are one foot tall. First put water on the soil, then manure and then dig the canal.
Another crop rotation of early turnip and sugar beet can be planted with early potatoes. Varieties of cauliflower may also be planted, but they must spend the first month in a nursery, then two months in the field. They should be planted on the mound or hill along with the potatoes.
The plants must be watered at least every 8-10 days in the initial stage of their growth. When they get bigger they do not need so much water. One month later, when the potato plants are one foot tall, an irrigation canal should be dug between the rows.
The dirt from the canal should be placed on the mound around the plants growing there. This will preserve the soil and help the plants as well. In the irrigation canal, plant winter brinjal, early lettuce, tomato, palang shák (a green leafy vegetable), big onions, small onions and varieties of cabbage. There are only two varieties of lettuce, early and late. The lettuce should be harvested along with the potato.
The cauliflower is harvested after two months in the field. During this time the potato should be left one month more to spread its roots. Lettuce requires three months and should be harvested with potato. After cauliflower, the early cabbage should be ready in one month.
The soil is tilled 8 times. The same ratio of NPK should be used, but in a lesser amount.
- Agraháyańa to late Phálguna
Late potato or 90 day potato. The soil must be ploughed 8 times.
Plant radish, late brinjal and panar nava shák (or pusne, punanas, gajmije, gadmide or giima – all small green leafy vegetables. Giima is medicinal.) along with late potato which will be harvested in late Phálguna. In Phálguna ginger should also be planted with either sesame or soybeans.
Late potato may also be planted with late cauliflower and cabbage in between. In the irrigation canal plant late cabbage, late lettuce, winter brinjal, tomato, palang shák, garlic and capsicum. After these crops have grown, the soil should be ploughed eight times and NPK of 20:20:15 ratio should be used.
- Caetra – Radish.
Summer radish should be planted with summer shák (green leafy summer vegetables) in the middle. Lal ság may also be planted between the radish plants and is in the same family as summer shák. One or the other may be planted.
If one does not plan to plant again in Caetra, one may plant the following in the irrigation canal: winter pumpkin, winter brinjal, anise, coriander and jiira.
During early Caetra, ginger may be planted with sesame or soybean from Caetra to Aśádha. Following the summer radish planted in Caetra, rainy season radish can be planted from Aśádha to Bhádra. From late Aśádha to Bhádra, plant peanut and soybean or rainy season sesame.
Shrávańa, peanut and early cauliflower should be planted together in rows. In the canal between the rows plant rainy season brinjal, rainy season green chilli and rainy season shák.
Or in place of the peanut and cauliflower, plant sweet potato or sweet juice potato with radish, tomato and winter lady’s finger.