Okay -- perhaps I'm showing a little "Homer Instinct" here. It might not be the "World's Best Radish." It might not even be the 2nd best. It might not even be selected for "runner-up" in the "Best Mutt" contest where the prize is two weeks in Bakersfield (1st place is one week in Bakersfield).
But I'm of the belief that the best produce in the world comes straight from your backyard garden. And -- thanks to a solid ten days of GORGEOUS weather in Northern California -- our North Natomas garden is "putting out."
Case in point? These lovely little radishes came straight from the raised gardening beds and went straight into last night's salad -- as did some various salad greens -- green onions -- garlic chives -- various fresh herbs and spices and whatever Mother Nature was good enough to bring us on Sunday.
Of course -- it does also help quite a bit that the wife that is Venus has discovered the magic of Omega 2000 and other liquid organic fertilizers that really pack a punch in the garden. That little lady will spend hours fertilizing every little last spot in the garden. And this is the result after a month of once-a-week treatment.
It's not just the radishes either. The fruit trees are popping. The peach trees are loaded - as is the Santa Rosa plum. The cherry trees are flowering like nobody's business. The hybrid tea roses -- tree roses and Floribunda roses are getting ready to pop open. The new plantings of nectarines -- pluots and table grapes are also showing decent signs of life.
This is what I like to call our "salad spring." Unfortunately, it doesn't last as long as Venus and I would like. But -- during this time of year -- you can literally harvest a salad a night from the backyard (minus the fresh tomatoes, of course).
The best part? In my opinion? Well -- I've always been a fan of radishes. I think it may have been the first thing that I planted in a garden as a small boy (radishes are easy). But -- in my humble opinion -- there's just something special about radishes that come straight from the backyard and onto your plate.
There's a bite there -- on the tastebuds -- that you just don't get from the store-bought varieties. Or -- perhaps you do -- but it's just not quite as strong. Plus -- you're not getting the "standard red radish" from the backyard. Oh no -- you're getting a taste of the Watermelon Radish -- or perhaps the French Breakfast. There's nothing wrong with the wild colors of the Easter Egg radish and the giant white April Cross makes for interesting dinner conversation.
Crunch, crunch people. It's fresh radish season! And -- if you're thinking that "I've missed the boat" -- think again! Plant seeds now to enjoy bumper harvests through mid-June. At some point the weather will turn just a tad too warm for radish growing endeavours -- but there's plenty of time left in fresh radish season.