Information Sheet - Radish, Oilseed in Ontario Field Crops

Eastern Canada cover crop selector tool

Planting Information
Drilled Seeding Depth ½-¾ inch [0.6-2 cm]
Drilled Seeding Rate 6-10 lb/ac [7-11 kg/ha]
Broadcast and incorporated rate should be 10 - 20% higher than drilled rate. Increase seeding rate in late fall.
Aerial seeding rate Recommended at least 25% higher than drilled rate.
Seeds per lb 34000 (metric: 75000)
Frost Seed No
Comments Reduce seeding rate to 2-5 lbs/acre if planter units used.
Termination Information
Termination Methods Freeze, Tillage, Herbicide
Termination Comments Mild winters may allow for 10% survival of some varieties
Performance Roles
Legume Nitrogen Source Poor
N scavenger + N holder Excellent
Organic matter/soil builder Good
Compaction Fighter Very Good
Water Erosion Fighter Good
Wind Erosion Fighter Good
Weed Fighter Excellent
Winter Survival Never
Winter Kill Never
Quick Growth Excellent
Lasting Residue Fair
Quick Residue Breakdown Poor - Mature crops are slower to decompose. Manage termination accordingly.
Potential Biofumigant Poor
Forage Harvest Fair
Seed Harvest Fair
Interseed with Cash Crop Very Good
Total Nitrogen 0 [N/A]
Dry Matter per year 1200-3500 lb/ac [1350-3900 kg/ha] - Dry matter and N content depends on amount of crop growth and maturity.
Comments Good N scavenging and weed control; N released rapidly; Best used in mixture with one or more cover crops
Cultural Traits
Scientific Name Raphanus sativus var.oleifer.
Life Cycle Cool Season Annual
Growth Habit Upright
Prefered Soil pH 6.0-7.5
Relative Costs (per area) 2
Min. Germination Temp. 45F/7C
Heat Tolerance Good
Drought Tolerance Good
Shade Tolerance Good
Flood Tolerance Fair
Low Fertility Tolerance Good
Potential Advantages, these are general, tentative ratings
Loosen subsoil Very Good
Makes P&K more available to crops Poor
Loosens Topsoil Very Good
Soil Ecology - Suppresses Nematodes Excellent
Soil Ecology - Suppresses Disease Good, check for specific diseases
Weed Control - Allelopathy Good
Weed Control - Chokes Weeds Excellent
Attracts Beneficials Very Good
Takes foot or vehicle traffic Fair
Short Windows Excellent, growth in a short time period
Comments Winter kills at 25°F; Attracts earthworms. Non host for soybean cyst nematode. Adagio and Colonel OSR are commonly used as trap crops for sugarbeet cyst nematode.
Potential Disadvantages (these are general ratings)
Volunteer Establishment (includes hard seed) Could be moderate problem
Weed Potential Could be moderate problem, includes hard seed, likelihood to produce seed or survive termination
Insects/Nematodes/Slugs Could be a minor problem
Crop Disease Rarely a problem, check for specific diseases
Establishment Challenges Rarely a problem
Challenges incorporating mature residues Occasionally a problem
Comments Winter kills at 25°F; Cultivars vary widely; Odor during decay. Host for root knot nematode, Penetrans Root-Lesion Nematode and sugarbeet cyst nematode; Risk for white mold (Sclerotinia). Early planting with dense vigorous growth may plug tiles.

The ability to achieve goals depends on appropriate situation and proper management.