No harvest this week, but had an interesting surprise.
Remember the radicchio from my 1/28/13 post? When I was separating the leaves from the core, I noticed roots and tiny radicchio shoots growing at the base of the core.
Core from the radicchio cut into 2 pieces. The US quarter next to them gives an idea of the size.
Those little pointy white growth are roots and the red spots among the roots are tiny radicchio shoots.
Decided to pot both pieces up in foam cup.
Placed the foam cups on the kitchen windowsill for observation.
Surprise! Both grew but the leaves turned green/brown.
Bumped up into larger pots.
Should have planted the cores in pots at the beginning, but I had no idea they would grow. Hope the disturbance from repotting did not cause any harm and both pieces will continue to grow.
The above observation got me thinking:
What if, this fall, when harvesting the radicchio, I cut the heads a little above soil level, dig up and replant the roots (that has a bit of stem (core) attached to each) into window boxes to over winter in the garage, will they grow new shoots? If so, will the shoots reach edible stage? Think I will give it a try, nothing to lose, something to gain.
Last year after I harvested the heads of radicchio, the roots went into the compost pile.
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Yes…if you leave the root in the ground and just cut the head off you will continue to get growth. Some say it is more bitter with the second growth, but I think it is still good. I have even got a 3rd and 4th growth out of many. Only issue is that the root becomes very strong and can be difficult to get up in the spring. If you leave it in it will keep growing! I have though I got all the root and left some in to find it popping up in my new veggies!
Good to know that. But we have long and very cold winters in the Hudson Valley and the grounds are frozen solid, will the roots still survive?
Hmmm…. under a hoop house it would probably last most of the winter. But that would be very experimental. If you go on my site and check out my Treviso radicchio blog posts that may be a great option for you too. After sowing in summer (perhaps June for you) the leaves grow for about 90-100 days then I pluck the whole root up, trim up the green part and leave the beginning red part and sit it in water in a cold dark spot (my garage). It’s a beautiful and yummy result 🙂
Thanks, I will check out your Treviso radicchio blog posts.
It sounds like a good experiment. No reason not to try.
Thanks for the encouragement.
You have such green fingers Norma.
I have my share of failures.
Good thinking Norma. I think it will grow, maybe it will go in a short dormant stage and will start after a month or so. Or maybe it will just continue growing. Interesting, keep us posted!
I hope so. Will post updates.
Wow. Who knew? I love learning things like this.
Me too, this was such a lovely surprise.
That’s very cool Norma, two perhaps three bangs for one! I love it. Gives a whole new meaning to recycling!
Never thought of this activity as “recycling”, but it really is. Not sure if they will reach edible stage, but it is still exciting.
Looking forward to hearing about it.
A great experiment, and something to keep the gardener going through the depths of winter! I’ve come to appreciate how hardy the chicories are, and their suitability for season extension.
Definitely keeps me going through the depths of winter, not sure if they will reach edible stage but I am surely looking forward to trying again this fall.
Norma, I wonder if you could cut the root into quarters or maybe thirds vertically to get even more heads. there appear to be multiple sprouts on the root to the left, and one root probably can’t support more than one new head. Might be worth trying with one of the roots next year.
Yes, there are mulitple sprouts on the section on the left. Love your idea to cut the section vertically into multiple heads, am going to think about it and decide whether I should do it now or wait until the sprouts grow a bit larger.
Give it a shot my friend 😀
Choc Chip Uru
Thanks for the encouragement.
This is brilliant! I love “recycled” veggies!
Hello Bee Girl,
Thanks, hope my recycled veggie grow to edible stage.
Wow I learn so much from your blog Norma! Never heard of radicchio before 🙂
Radicchio belongs to the chicory family.
I read celery grows from the root end and you can reuse your celery roots so it should work for radicchio too. I say go for it! Never know unless you try.
Thanks for the encouragement, I will be going for it this fall. Did not know about reusing celery root, will give that a try this fall too. Thanks also for visiting.
You have such a green thumb, Norma, well done with the radicchio. I do wonder how your ginger is coming along xx
Thanks. My ginger is not doing anything yet, will post an update as soon as I see some sign.
You should really give that thought a try and you’ll never know — your theory could be right! This is very interesting, Norma. 🙂
Thanks for the encouragement, I will post updates.
Amazing what you can grow with a bit of experimenting…………………….
I really enjoy experimenting, the knowledge gain is awesome.
I am going to try cut and come again too, although my raddichio has been buried underneath a sea of bean plants so i am hoping its still alive. If not I’ll try next time. Good tip.
Thanks. Hope your radicchio is still alive, who knows it may be growing underneath the bean plants that are protecting it.
I love how you experiment Norma – I wish I had a greener thumb. I get inspiration from seeing what you grow.
Thanks for your kind comment. I do enjoy experimenting. Gain a great deal of knowledge from the excercise.
Now that you know they will grow, I can’t wait to see what you will do next :). I just l ove your green thumb 🙂
One of my commenter suggested I cut the left section, that had many sprouts, vertically into a thirds or fourth to get more heads, am going to try that when the plant gets a little bigger.
Goodness, Norma! Look what you’ve discovered! And in the middle of Winter, no less. Good work and I can’t wait to see how this turns out, especially next Summer. 🙂
Wish I had discovered it earlier, I could be harvesting full heads of racicchio now from all those radicchio cores that went into the compost pile, what a waste. Well better late than never and this fall I am definitely going to do better.
I always learn something here, Norma. I love how you experiment with plants and roots and I can imagine the bit of fascination it adds to the winter months to watch what happens. Makes me want to try some of this type of experimentation on my own.
It makes the winter months go by faster and I am less antsy. Awaiting winter storm Nemo’s arrival on Friday, may get up to 12 inches of snow.
I think you will enjoy experimenting with plants and roots I learn as much from the failure (actually more) as from the success. Did you harvest your broccoli?
I had to leave town before I could use it and it’s waiting for tomorrow night. Alas, our weather has been so warm that some critter has hatched and is mowing through all the kale and chard now…doesn’t seem to like the broccoli florets but does like the leaves. 😦
Are they little green caterpillars? If yes, they are cabbage worms, you can just pick them off by hand. They will hide in the broccoli florets, soak the heads in salted water to get rid of them.
So far I haven’t caught them in the act, but will look more closely now that I know what to look for, thanks!
You just amaze me all the time Norma! Your growing abilities are incredible. You just have that nurturing touch. And I always love your experiments!
You flatter me, I am just fooling around. Seriously, I should start doing some kind of record keeping so I can look back and see when I start what and the results.
What a great surprise! And I love all the garden experiments you do 🙂
Wish I had discovered this surprise earlier but better late than never. This fall I am definitely going to go all out.
I always enjoy your experiments too Norma! Looking forward to seeing how this turns out. I’m really enjoying the extra light in the evenings . . . makes me feel like spring (and all that garden prep) is just around the corner.
I am anxious to see how this turns out too. Bracing for the BIG snow storm set to arrive tomorrow, garden prep is not going to be around the corner.
In my opinion the radicchio will grow just fine and you will be able to harvest.
Love your experiments Norma 🙂
Hope you are having a wonderful week!
Thanks for the confidence, I sure hope they grow just fine. A wonderful week to you too.
I’m happy that you are doing the experiment. It helps all the gardeners with short growing seasons learn new techniques.
I am doing the experiments but not doing good record keeping, need to make amends.