Dr. Joe Masabni
Department of Horticulture
Texas AgriLife Extension Service
Chinese radish is a cruciferous root crop used mainly as a cooked vegetable. It can also be eaten raw. Roots are large, often 2 to 4 inches in diameter and 6 to 20 inches long. There are three distinct shapes – spherical, oblong and cylindrical. Most of the commonly available Chinese radishes are white, but some are yellowish, green or black.
These radishes are generally marketed in bunches of three or four roots for the small variety and one to three roots for the larger variety, depending on size.
Culture is similar to the common radish, except that daikons are bigger and need more space and a longer growing season. A deep, loose, moist, fertile soil is required. Plant in late winter or early spring for spring and summer use and in July for fall harvest.
As with any root crop, look for Chinese radishes that are free of growth cracks and bruises with firm and crisp roots. Chinese radishes keep well in refrigeration if they are placed in a sealed container or plastic bag to maintain high humidity.
Since the pungent flavor of daikon is found primarily in the skin, they are sometimes peeled before cooking.