Cultivating Daikon: advice on growing in pots or in the garden. From the period to the care to be allocated to the Japanese root known as daikon.
Daikon, what is it
In Japanese, the termdaikon, literally means "big root". Thedaikon, in fact, it is a root of Asian origin, very common also in our parts where, however, a very close relative, theramolaccio.
The botanical name of thedaikonisRaphanus sativus (var.longipinnatus or niger, the two terms are synonymous). It is a variety of the common radish so much so that it is also called as:
- Chinese radish
- Japanese radish
- winter radish
This root is native to eastern Asia. In fact, there are many varieties ofdaikon, all extremely fleshy.
Japanese radish or aokubi daikon
The most common variety in Japan, which therefore is properly definedJapanese radish, is the aokubi daikon. Thereaokubi daikonit is shaped like a large carrot. It is 20 to 30 cm long and has a diameter of 5 to 10 cm.
Daikon, how to eat
In Japan, thedaikonplays a very important role: we are talking about an ingredient widely used in the kitchen. It is also heavily used in other oriental cuisines such as Korean, Chinese, Vietnamese or Indian.
If you are wonderinghow to eat it, you are spoiled for choice. This ingredient is very versatile, you can cook it in the oven or use it raw.
Theraw daikonit can be used for the preparation of salads or as a garnish for sashimi dishes. It can also be marinated in oil and vinegar.
Theraw daikonyou can also grate: grated daikon in Japan is known asdaikon oroshi and is a very popular garnish for dishes such as natto (fermented bean food) or yakizakana (literally grilled fish).
Again, it can be added, like a carrot, in soups and broths. It is typically served with miso soups and stews such as oden (a kind of soup in fish or seaweed broth).
After seeing how to eat it, let's see how to grow it! TheJapanese radishit is easy to grow and thecultivationit is possible throughout the Italian territory.
They need a soil with a pH 6.5 - 7.5 reaction (basically neutral). It prefers limestone or siliceous substrates. The soil must be moderately moist and fertile.
Daikon, sowing period
If you are wonderingwhen to grow daikon, know that you have a long period of time available for sowing. The period in which it is possible to sow the Japanese radish runs from March to September.
Those sowing in March will have their first daikon root crop in June. You can sow in batches to ensure that you harvest the daikon root well into November.
The sowing period is so extended because thedaikon plantwithstands both high and low temperatures. In Southern Italy, where temperatures are particularly mild, it is possiblecultivateall the year.
Thedaikonin fact, it can tolerate and thrive with temperatures between 4 and 30 ° C.
Daikon, cultivation in pots or in the garden
The plants prefer a sunny position or only a little shaded. Partial shade exposure is only useful in summer crops and in southern Italy where the heat raises the temperature a lot.
Who wantsgrowing daikon in potswill have to choose very deep containers, at least 40 - 50 cm. You will need to add compost to the soil or choose a very fertile soil rich in organic matter.
At the bottom of the pot, prepare a thin layer of expanded clay to avoid water stagnation.
Who wantscultivate daikonin the garden, can start directly from sowing. The seeds should be distributed at a distance of 15 cm on the same row. The distance between the rows should be about 30 cm.