Tips for growing turnips successfully
Turnips are a great choice to add to your spring garden. What makes these veggies so awesome is they can either be planted in the spring or in the fall and eaten cooked or raw. Turnips are easy to grow so adding these to your garden will be of great benefit. So what are the steps in growing turnips?
Steps for planting, growing, and harvesting turnips
1. Location is so important, turnips require full sunlight although partial shade will do.
3. Level and smooth the area before sowing seeds.
4. Wet the soil lightly with water.
5. Sprinkle seeds and gently rake 1/2inches into the soil.
6. Next, gently water don’t overwater or soak the soil. The goal is to wet the soil enough for proper seed germination.
7. Turnips should develop a good root system therefore as the plant begins to develop thin plants to about 3-5 inches.
Planting, growing, and harvesting turnips
Care of turnips
- Keep soil somewhat moist not waterlogged
- Keep the plant bed weed-free
- Adding mulches is an added benefit
When to harvest turnips?
Turnips can be harvested anywhere from 5-10 weeks after planting. The leaves taste best when they are tender and young.
For fall harvesting should be done after the frost before it becomes very cold.
Turnip pest control
There is nothing like having uninvited guests that seek to make a meal of your garden plants. The good news is by following these steps will help to eliminate these pest problems.
- Aphids are pear-shaped insects that have piercing-sucking mouthparts that suck the juice from turnips. Signs include welt or leaf curl. Aphids can be eliminated by spraying your turnips with a strong spray of water knocking them off and killing them or by applying insecticidal soap when the weather is 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Flea beetles can either be tan, black, or another color, there are many species of these beetles. Flea beetles are best to identify by their ability to hop as they move from plant to plant. Flea beetles eat plant parts making holes in your tender growth of plant leaves. Symptoms include blight and wilt of the plant. Using insecticidal soap or an organic spray will bring these beetles under control.
- Whiteflies are another insect pest problem. These flys once disturbed will fly quickly from the infected plant but will return just as quickly. Whiteflies have piercing-sucking mouthparts that are injected into the plant extracting plant juice.
- The secretion of the whiteflies will cause sooty mold to form on your turnips. To control white flys either use horticultural oils or insecticidal soap sprays.
- Cutworms live in the soil and damage plants by feeding on the lower hanging leaves and stems. Signs of these garden insect pests are seedlings that are cut down to ground level. To eliminate the eggs and larvae plow soil 10 days before planting seeds also applying diatomaceous earth around the base of plants offers help.
- The seed corn and cabbage maggots are both small legless and white. These larvae live in the soil and feed on turnips roots and younger plants. To control apply diatomaceous earth around the plant base.
Disease of turnips
Turnips are also susceptible to disease and therefore identifying and treating these diseases will ensure that you yield a good harvest.
- Downy mildew is caused by a fungus, it appears on the underside of turnips and is a fuzzy white patch. Applying fungicides early in the season and until the time of harvest may be the best option.
- Powdery mildew is also caused by fungus. The sign that your plant has this fungus appears as a circular white appearance on the surface of your turnip leaves or it may appear as if your plants were dusted with white flour.
- This fungus may also spread to the stems and fruits of plants causing the leaves to become distorted or twisted. Treat this disease by applying neem oil, sulfur, or lime.
Turnip nutritional facts
Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Folate, Niacin, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Fiber, and Pantothenic acid.
Health benefits of turnips
1. Turnips have been known to help prevent cancer.
2. Aids in weight loss.
3. Helps to lower blood pressure.
4. Promotes good digestion.
5. Are good for diabetic patients.
6. Help with a good bowel movement
The final word
Turnips are great to plant in the spring or late fall. Growing turnips in your home garden can be very rewarding and the benefits they offer are very amazing. So get started on those turnips and yield a harvest.