GroundHog Radish is an annual, cool season, large broad leaf brassica widely used as a fast growing, very beneficial cover crop, livestock and wildlife feed and soil builder.
GroundHog radish is commonly referred to as a "tillage" radish and "forage" radish, due to their ability to provide forage to livestock and deer and its ability to form a long, wide root that "tillers" into the soil and naturally loosens compacted soils.
GrounHog Radish has many other benefits such as it's ability to capture and recycle soil nutrients in the large amount of biomass it produces in a relatively short period.
GroundHog radish produces a large amount of root & leaf mass, allowing up to 200 units of nitrogen per acre to be captured.
Another major benefit of GroundHog Radish is that they decomposes quickly, leaving loose soils and better water and air infilatration to the soil. Producers then have the ability to no-till into fields or simply broadcast their following crops after GroundHog Radishes, with more success. *In southern regions, you may have to till the radishes under prior to the plant producing seed to start the decomposing process and stop the plants from reseeding themselves.
Other benefits of GroundHog radish's quick establishment is their ability to suppress weed competition and provides quick cover to deter soil erosion for the subsequent crop.
GroundHog Radish have a large, long, fleshy taproot that can be up to 18" itself. The actual Radish plant has succulent wide leaves that are soft and palatable.
The GroundHog Radish plant can reach 1-2 feet high above the ground in a semi-erect nature.
GroundHog Radish should be planted in the spring or fall (by mid September) for best results.
GroundHog Radishes are tolerant of cold temperatures up to about 25 degrees and it will take several below 20 degree nights to kill them off.
GroundHog Radish should be planted at a 1/4 to 1/2" depth.
Seeding rates will vary depending on method.
GroundHog Radish needs plenty of Nitrogen to put on fast growth-ideally plant in a field with good manure history or apply 50#/Acre of N preplant.
GroundHog Radish will give the greatest benefits if allowed at least 60 days growth.
In the spring, GroundHog Radish can be planted early to provide fast cover and green manure for cash crops put in late May or early June.
Fall planted provides the most benefit. If late fall temperatures stay warmer, you may have to mow crop to prevent reseeding the subsequent year.
GroundHog Radish produces poorly in humid conditions and will not tolerate shading or traffic.
Planting GroundHog on the same field for more than 2 years or with other mustard family brassicas, is not recommended.