horseradish (herb) plant

(Question)

How do I know when to check that the roots are ready to get the horseradish?. I have a two-year plant with long leaves and I have not checked yet the roots. Once I took some, can I replant it? Since it is a perennial, it should come back. Thanks for your help.

 

(Answer)

For the strongest flavour harvest horseradish when it is dormant, after the foliage dies back from frost in the fall or before the crown starts growing again in the spring.  A two-year old plant should have a root at least 1 inch in diameter and be ready to harvest. Loosen the soil around the plant and carefully lift the whole root out of the soil. Shake and brush off the remaining soil and then cut off the crown.  Much like dandelion roots, any piece of root that you leave in the ground can grow into a new plant next year. You can add some compost and replant the crown or break off small pieces of side shoots from the root to replant.

Once your harvested roots are clean and dry, they are ready to peel and grate for your favorite recipe. Enjoy!

References: books - The Canadian Edible Garden (Alison Beck) and The Vegetable Gardener’s Bible (Edward Smith)