What is radish: description and characteristics of the plant
Radish is one of the first spring fruits that appear on our menu after a long winter, so it is very relevant at the beginning of the spring period. This is a juicy, pleasant-looking fruit with a sweetish sharpness. Next, we will tell you what the root crops are, about their benefits, possible contraindications for the body, as well as about varietal varieties and methods of use.
Description and description of appearance
Radish refers to the vegetable fruits of the genus Radish of the Cabbage family. They belong to the flowering department, the class of dicotyledons, the order of cabbage.
The history of culture has ancient roots: it is believed that its homeland is the Central Asian region. Also, a vegetable like the radish we knew was grown in ancient states - China, Japan and Egypt. Some interesting facts are known about how this vegetable appeared in Europe and about its further cultivation in that area. The radish was brought to Europe by the Italian merchant Marco Polo (13th century), after which it spread very quickly throughout most of the continent.
Did you know? The word "radish" comes from the transformed Latin word "radix", meaning "root". Below we’ll tell you all about the characteristic features of culture and how it looks like:
- Radish is an early ripe root plant. There are varieties that fully mature in 15–20 days from the time of sowing seed material, which makes it possible to take several crops per season (up to 4 times).
- Young leaves and plant fruits are consumed.
- There are greenhouse varieties, as well as cultivated in the open ground;
- The fruits of the plant are juicy, have a sharp taste and fresh aroma.
- Root crops are from 1.5 to 10 cm in diameter.
- The taste of some varieties of radishes is slightly pungent due to the content of mustard oil. There are also varieties with more juicy, not bitter fruits.
- In shape, the fruits are flat-rounded, oval-cylindrical or fusiform.
- The hue of the pulp of the fetus depends on what kind of culture. There are fruits that have a snow-white, white-pink pulp, or pinkish color.
- Color differences of root crops - pink, white, red, yellow, green or purple, with white tips. There are varieties that are completely dyed in one tone, which do not have a white hue at the tip of the color transition.
- Depending on varietal varieties, root crops weigh from 5–10 g to 35–40 g; Also, in some varieties of radish (for example, the Red Giant), fruits weighing up to 100 g are found.
- The foliage is simple, petiolate, it can be whole or lyre-dissected, collected in sockets. The length of the sheet is 5–25 cm.
- On the leaves there is an edge of hard hairs.
- Color differences of foliage - from light green to bright green.
- The root of the plant is rod.
- After the radish has fully ripened, a rounded branchy shoot is formed in the leaf rosette from 25 cm to 1 m in height.
- The culture blooms up to 35 days with inflorescences of a white, pinkish or purple hue, collected in a brush. Each flower is up to one and a half centimeters in diameter.
- After flowering, in place of the inflorescences, pod fruits up to 7 cm in length remain, rounded from the bottom and elongated at the top. Each pod holds over a dozen rounded seeds of light brown color.
By its composition, radishes can be considered a rather nutritious root crop, since it contains many different vitamins, macro- and microelements, natural sugars, dietary fiber, as well as organic acids and other compounds.
The table shows the average chemical composition of the fruit (per 100 g of product):
|Calories - 21 kcal|
|IN 1||0.01 mg|
|IN 2||0.03 mg|
|AT 4||6.4 mg|
|AT 5||0.19 mg|
|AT 6||0.1 mg|
|AT 9||7 mcg|
|Organic acids||0.2 g|
|Food fiber||1.7 g|
Considering the indicators of the table, we conclude that the vegetable has a high energy value with a fairly low calorie content.
We recommend that you learn about the beneficial and harmful properties of radishes for human health.
Since radish is the very first vegetable ripening in early spring at the time of an acute need of the body for vitamins and minerals, we will consider what exactly its benefits are, and whether there are any contraindications for its consumption.
- The usefulness of radishes is as follows:
- it saturates the body with a vitamin-mineral complex;
- the vegetable is rich in fiber;
- there are essential oils, anthocyanins (plant glycosides that give the fruit a color), vitamins, macro- and microelements;
- contains the necessary protein for building muscle and bone tissue;
- it contains mustard essential oil, which gives the vegetable antiseptic and antibacterial properties, and also stimulates appetite;
- its use normalizes digestion, improving complexion;
- useful for jaundice, asthma, hemorrhoids;
- lowers cholesterol;
- boosts immunity;
- establishes metabolic processes;
- increases vascular elasticity, which improves cardiac activity;
- has an anti-edematous, choleretic effect;
- use is the prevention of gout, diabetes and obesity;
- accelerates blood circulation;
- increases hemoglobin level;
- the fruits will be useful for colds, since they have an antipyretic property, and also eliminate cough;
- promotes wound healing;
- relieves pain with radiculitis pain;
- contributes to weight loss;
- due to the content of folic acid normalizes the balance of hormones in women;
- improves the health of hair and dermis.
Although the plant brings tangible benefits to the body, some of its properties are harmful to people suffering from certain diseases.
- Among the contraindications are the following:
- diseases of the stomach and intestines in an acute form;
- essential oils harm people with diseases of the duodenum, stomach, liver, pancreas;
- can not be used in inflammatory processes in the thyroid gland and bile ducts;
- vegetables are contraindicated in people with a history of myocardial infarction;
- breastfeeding and the age of children up to 3 years (due to the risk of bloating and colic).
Varieties of Radish
There is a classification of plant varieties, dividing the fruits according to their vegetation cycles into annual and biennial species, among which:
Check out the best varieties of radishes and their characteristics.
All European species are annuals, the rest are winter plants that produce seed material only next year. The fruits of both species are suitable for use only in the first vegetation. Let us consider in more detail the description of these species.
Annual crops of the European species are the earliest.
They have the following features:
- The period from sowing of seed material to harvesting is 16–25 days.
- These forms have small root crops with a short shelf life.
- European varieties have red, white, pink, variegated, striped or two-color root crops.
- Early varieties of radish most often have round or flattened fruits, but sometimes elongated ones are also found. In diameter round vegetables - from 2 to 6 cm; oval - 1.5 cm, their length is 4-6 cm.
- Early ripening radish is planted in the ground mainly with seeds, without growing seedlings.
- Seeds from annual vegetables are harvested at the end of the growing season.
- Firstborn F1;
- Rondar F1;
- French breakfast
- Autumn giant;
- Wurzburg 59.
The following radish varieties are called two-year-olds:
Late-ripening radish of the described species ripens by early August, in the northern regions of the central part of the Eurasian continent - at the end of the last summer month. In Japanese-Chinese varieties of radish, root crops appear in the year of sowing seeds, and seed can be harvested only next year.
The best late grades are:
- Dungan 12/8;
- Ice icicle;
- Red Giant.
How to choose and store radishes?
If you yourself do not grow radish, but buy it in the vegetable departments of shops or in the market, recommendations on choosing healthy and healthy garden products will come in handy.
- high-quality radish will be with even and smooth skin, without cracks, and will also have a good juicy tops of bright green color;
- if there are black dots and spots on the fruits, you should not buy them - the process of decay has begun in them;
- when choosing vegetables, it is important to feel them for hardness - they should not crush under the fingers (softness indicates lethargy);
- in order not to receive a dose of nitrates when using purchased radishes, it is necessary to cut the tails and tops before using it;
- always check the radish for a taste that is succulent and not bitter enough.
- Immediately after harvesting the radish or buying it in the store, you do not need to completely cut the tops and ponytails from vegetables (unless you are going to immediately eat it). If you remove the indicated parts from the fruit, then the shelf life will be significantly reduced (only 5-6 hours), after which the vegetables will wither and become not tasty.
- To keep the harvest fresh for 7 days, all vegetables need to be cut off the tops 3 cm from root crops, and then folded into a plastic bag and placed in the refrigerator in the vegetable compartment.
- For a good presentation of the radish and its best preservation, before harvesting, you need to water the garden from the evening, and harvest the crop in the morning - so the root crop is well-saturated with moisture and will lie longer, staying fresh.
- A shelf life of several months can only be found in radishes of the Dugansky and Red Giant varieties, provided that they are in the refrigerator or cellar.
- There is another method that is practiced in many countries - root crops are cut into thin slices, mixed with different spices, put in a glass dish and pour boiling water. Then canned and stored for storage in a cool place.
Find out if radishes can be frozen in the freezer for the winter.
There are many different recipes and methods for preparing radish dishes or with their addition. The product is able to combine well with various vegetables in compositions in the form of salads. The root crop is rarely subjected to heat treatment.
Did you know? Japanese chefs make radish chips : cut the fruits into thin strips and dry them in the oven. Such an appetizer can last a very long time, especially packed in paper or in a glass container. Here are some dishes that you can add radishes to:
- spring salads with the addition of various greens seasoned with sour cream or mayonnaise;
- vegetable salad with the addition of goat cheese or feta cheese;
- salad with eggs and cucumbers;
- chicken salad;
- salad with cabbage and corn;
- salad of dandelion, lettuce and sorrel;
- okroshka with kvass or kefir;
- vegetable cold soups;
- beetroot soup;
- various meat and fish canapes;
- string bean, tomato and feta salad;
- curd paste;
- squid salad;
- Russian salad;
- borsch with sorrel;
- liver cake;
- stuffed root crop (for large varieties) with various fillings.