Table of contents:

Turnip Growing: Agricultural Technology, Seed Preparation, Sowing, Care
Turnip Growing: Agricultural Technology, Seed Preparation, Sowing, Care

Video: Turnip Growing: Agricultural Technology, Seed Preparation, Sowing, Care

Video: Turnip Growing: Agricultural Technology, Seed Preparation, Sowing, Care
Video: How to Grow Lots of Turnips from Seed to Harvest 2023, October

Everything about turnips - a tasty and healthy vegetable for its vitamin, dietary and medicinal properties

growing turnips
growing turnips

Turnip (Brassica rapa) is the oldest vegetable crop in Europe and Asia, which has and was of great importance in human nutrition, especially before the spread of potatoes. In ancient times, it was grown in Babylon and Assyria. Long before our era, in Greece, young turnips were eaten, and the overgrown and excess harvest was fed to domestic animals and birds.

For a long time, turnips have also been cultivated in the Nordic countries. She came to Russia from Greece, as evidenced by her Greek name, which means "fast-growing". They began to sow turnips on the territory of Ancient Russia at the beginning of the development of agriculture. It is mentioned in documents from the 14th century. Turnip was very important in the nutrition of the population before the spread of potato culture in the forest and forest-steppe zones.

It is known that until the 18th century, the Finnish and Russian (in the northern regions) population fermented turnip leaves for cooking cabbage soup. The fields where it was sown were called "repish". At the beginning of the 20th century, turnips were also grown in Russia as a forage crop. Since then, in our country there has been a double name: less productive table varieties are called in the old way turnips, and more productive ones used for feed are called turnips (this word is borrowed from the English language).

Currently, in India, China, Japan, salads, soups are prepared from turnip leaves, in addition, they are salted. In the United States, they are frozen and canned for sale. They also believe that turnip roots are the most valuable source of vitamin C, and its leaves are the cheapest product for obtaining carotene. In our country, turnip has a relatively small share in production, but is widely used by amateur vegetable growers.

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Growing turnips

Due to the high demand of this culture for the presence of nutrients in the soil, it is placed after crops under which organic and mineral fertilizers were applied. The best predecessors for turnips are: cucumber, zucchini, tomato and legumes, as well as potatoes, corn, winter cereals and clover of 1-2 years of use. To prevent damage to plants by pests and diseases, they must be returned to their original place no earlier than after four years.

Soil tillage helps to loosen the arable layer, plays an important role in the fight against weeds, diseases and plant pests. Soil preparation depends entirely on the timing of sowing turnip, soil type, predecessor (crop occupying the site a year before sowing turnip), weeds.

The autumn processing of the site, on which earlier crops were grown (lettuce, dill, zucchini, cucumber, tomato), begins with the removal of plant residues, raking them from the soil surface with a rake. This loosening promotes the germination of weed seeds and prevents the soil from drying out. 15-20 days after the emergence of weed plants, the soil is dug to the full depth of the humus horizon. Areas vacated after late crops (beets, carrots, parsley, celery, parsnips) are dug up immediately after harvesting. At the same time, a prerequisite for the successful cultivation of any crop, including turnips, will be the careful removal of plant residues, on which pests and pathogens often remain. After the potatoes, which were removed, the soil was thoroughly dug up, autumn processing, as a rule, is not done.

If the soils are littered with perennial rhizomatous (creeping wheatgrass) and root-sprouting (field thistle, bristly thistle, small sorrel), it is necessary to loosen twice to a depth of 4-6 cm with an interval between them 7-10 days. For this, it is very good to use various flat cutters, hoes; on light soils - you can rake. As a result, the germination of weed seeds, as well as their vegetative reproductive organs, is provoked. 1-2 weeks after the second loosening, the site is dug to a depth of 20-25 cm.

Spring tillage for turnips should be started with harrowing to a depth of 3-5 cm using a rake. The sooner this work is carried out, the more its effectiveness, since the upper part of the capillaries is destroyed, which protects the soil from moisture loss.

This technique is called: loosening to close the moisture. When the soil is ripe, the site is dug up to 3/4 of the depth of the autumn digging, beds are made and carefully leveled. This is primarily necessary to protect the soil from drying out. In moderately moist soils with a deep arable layer, turnips can be grown on a flat surface. In waterlogged areas with a shallow humus horizon, it is imperative to prepare ridges. Their height is 20-25 cm. In this case, the soil warms up better, the thickness of the fertile layer increases, which contributes to the better development of the root system, and during the rainy period the plants do not get wet. Considering that the turnip seeds are small and are planted to a shallow depth, it is recommended to slightly compact the soil surface before sowing. This ensures uniform planting of seeds, improves their contact with the soil,and also helps to "pull" moisture from the lower layers.

growing turnips
growing turnips

Turnip fertilizers

Organic fertilizers have a significant impact on the yield of turnip root crops. It is best to bring them under the previous culture. It is impossible to bring fresh straw manure directly under the turnip, as this leads to the appearance of ugly, hollow root crops, a decrease in their keeping quality during long-term storage. In addition, fresh manure, bird droppings, and even more fecal fertilizers and composts from them, can be a source of infectious diseases, as well as contain eggs and larvae of worms. These fertilizers can be used for all vegetable crops, especially for root crops, not earlier than in 1-2 years. If the soil is poor in organic matter, you have not applied these fertilizers for a long time, you can make a refueling in the amount of 3-4 kg of humus for the main processing.

The application rates of mineral fertilizers depend on a number of factors: soil fertility, timing of application, types of fertilizers, etc. On average, the following doses of these fertilizers are recommended in g per 1 m²: ammonium nitrate - 15-20, double superphosphate - 15-20, potassium salt - 30-40 g. It is better to add potassium salt to turnip than other potash fertilizers. The thing is that in addition to potassium chloride, it contains, like no other fertilizer, sodium chloride. Phosphorus and potash fertilizers are applied: 2/3 of the recommended dose - in the fall for digging, and 1/3 - in the spring for pre-sowing treatment. Nitrogen fertilizers are usually applied in spring and when feeding. Concentrated complex mineral fertilizers have proven themselves very well. The most valuable of them are nitroammofosk, Kemir, azofosk, nitrophoska. These fertilizers contain nitrogen, phosphorus,potassium - that is, all the macronutrients needed to get a good harvest of root crops. They are brought in during the spring filling of the soil.

When used under the turnip ash, it is brought under the digging of the site in the amount of 100-150 g / m². Then you need to add nitrogen fertilizers. The most effective of them on poor soils is ammonium nitrate in the amount of 10-20 g / m².

Acidic soils definitely need liming. This not only eliminates the negative effect of excessive acidity, but also saturates the soil with calcium, increases the efficiency of mineral fertilizers and inhibits the vital activity of harmful microorganisms. The dose of lime per 1 g / m² when applied on acidic heavy soils is 1-1.2 kg, on light weakly acidic soils - 0.4-0.5 kg. Smaller doses of lime materials do not give the desired effect. Lime materials are more often applied under the predecessor. They are not recommended to be applied simultaneously with organic fertilizers, especially with manure, since a significant proportion of nitrogen is lost. The most favorable time for liming is autumn-winter, since until spring lime will have an effect already in the first year after application. You can scatter lime over the snow. The last liming period is 2-3 weeks before sowing the seeds.

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Turnip varieties

The varieties differ not only in the color of the pulp, but also in the color of the peel, the nature of its surface, and the shape of the root crop. They also differ in early maturity, yield, content of nutrients and vitamins, hardness and taste of pulp, keeping quality, ability to preserve pulp during storage, resistance to keel and other diseases, as well as pests.

Five varieties of turnips are officially registered in our State Register: Geisha, Lira, Petrovskaya 1, Sapphire, Snegurochka. The most famous is the old Russian variety Petrovskaya (it is also called Voshchanka), which is one of the best in taste.

Seed preparation and sowing of turnips

To obtain friendly shoots, it is necessary to carefully prepare the seeds for sowing. When sizing, small and shriveled seeds are removed, which, as a rule, do not resemble. Seeds of uniform size ensure friendly and even germination. For thermal disinfection, which eliminates the need for pesticides, seeds are soaked for 30 minutes at a temperature of + 45 … + 50 ° C. Then the water is drained, and the seeds are dried to a free-flowing state. This work can be done in advance, before leaving for the country. An indispensable condition in this case should be thorough drying of the seeds at a temperature not exceeding + 30 ° C and their storage before sowing in a dry, cool room.

Effectively soaking seeds at room temperature in solutions of trace elements: boric acid, copper sulfate, manganese sulfate and ammonium molybdenum at a concentration of 0.1% of each drug. You can make a mixture of these micronutrients and add a 0.2% superphosphate extract to them. This solution is consumed at the rate of 1 g of seeds - 1 ml of liquid.

Sowing dates may vary. For early production, turnips are sown in early spring, as soon as the soil is ready.

For autumn and winter consumption - in late spring and summer, in such a way that the roots are ripe before frost, but not overgrown, retain their juiciness and are ready for winter storage. With spring sowing and at the end of summer, turnip ripens in 60-75 days. Summer sowing is most often carried out in early to mid-July (on Peter's day, which is why the best variety of popular turnip is named so). When choosing the timing of sowing, the time of summer of dangerous pests - cruciferous flea and cabbage fly - is also taken into account in order to avoid severe damage to young plants. When sown in late April-early May and in the middle of summer, it is possible to avoid the massive spread of these pests.

In the conditions of the garden, turnips are sown by hand. Sowing on the ridges is done both along them and across. It is not the direction of the rows relative to the beds that is important, but their location relative to the cardinal points. It has been noticed that plants develop better when the rows are oriented from north to south. Then they are evenly illuminated throughout the day, do not shade each other, and as a result, by the time of harvesting, they form relatively identical root crops. When placing rows along the beds, 3-4 rows are sown with a distance of 25-30 cm between them. When the rows are transversely arranged, the distance between them is 30-35 cm. Seeds are sealed when sowing on cohesive soils to a depth of 0.5-1 cm, on lungs - no more than 1.5-2 cm. 0.1-0.2 g of seeds are consumed per 1 m². To ensure an even distribution of seeds along the row, river sand or even dry soil is most often added to them as ballast.

turnip harvest
turnip harvest

Turnip crop care

Like most vegetable crops, turnips need timely and high-quality care. It is especially important to carry out pre-emergence loosening to a depth of 3-5 cm. This agricultural technique allows you to destroy the soil crust, which often appears after the last rain. It is dangerous for germinating seeds, since seedlings cannot break through the compacted, sticky top of the soil and often die. When a crust appears before germination, the soil should be immediately loosened with a light rake, taking care not to damage the cultivated plants.

To combat weeds, up to 4-6 loosening of row spacings are carried out over the summer. The first inter-row cultivation is done shortly after germination. The depth of loosening and their amount depend on the soil and climatic conditions. If the soils are light, loosening is carried out finer than on heavy ones. On soils prone to drying out, they loosen less often than on wet ones. In order not to damage the root system of plants, the depth of loosening near them is shallower than in the middle of the rows. With frequent loosening of row spacings, the need for weeding disappears. Only to remove weeds in the rows do 1-2 weeding.

To obtain a high yield of turnip, it is necessary to timely and efficiently thin out the plants in the rows. With a delay in this work, young shoots are stretched out, oppressed, which ultimately affects the size, quality and timing of the harvest. The first thinning is carried out one and a half to two weeks after germination, the second - one and a half to two weeks after the first. Thinning of seedlings is usually combined with weeding of plants in rows. It is advisable to thin out immediately after rain, when the soil is moist enough so that they are better removed from the soil and do not damage the roots of neighboring ones, which are left for further growth. In its absence, it is necessary to water the soil thoroughly.

The first thinning is done by the bunching method (with the help of a hoe, part of the seedlings in a row is cut down, leaving bunches of plants). After the second, carried out manually, the best, typical plants are left with a distance of 6-10 cm between them. With uniform sowing with a small seeding rate, turnips can be grown without a second manual thinning, but the yield will be more heterogeneous in size root crops. As a rule, removed turnip plants are not planted in places of lunges - it takes root poorly.

To obtain root crops with good taste with a moisture deficit in the soil, it is necessary to water 3-4 times during the growing season. It is most responsive to watering turnip during periods of 3-4 true leaves, the beginning of thickening of root crops and a month before the start of harvesting. To reduce water losses for evaporation, watering is recommended to be done in the afternoon, late afternoon, or in the evening.

Obtaining a high yield of root crops is possible with timely and high-quality fertilizing with organic and mineral fertilizers. The first feeding is done after the first thinning. At this time, the plants are given a complete mineral complex in an easily accessible form. It is recommended to make the first feeding with organic fertilizers: slurry 1: 3; mullein 1:10; bird droppings 1:15. However, such feeding does not meet the sanitary requirements. Therefore, it is better to make the first feeding with composted grass - "live manure" diluted 1: 3 or 1: 4. One bucket of prepared solution is enough for 3-5 m². At this time, the plants are still small. Top dressing with organic fertilizers promotes intensive growth, increases resistance to adverse environmental conditions and, in addition, repels pests.

In the absence of organic matter, fertilizing can be done with mineral fertilizers, for this, 1 m² is applied: ammonium nitrate - 5-10 g; superphosphate - 10-15 g and potassium chloride - 5-10 g. You can use combined fertilizers: Kemira, nitrophoska, azofoska, ecofoska in the amount of 20-30 g (tablespoon) per 1 m². The specified amount of fertilizers is dissolved in water and 0.1% of ammonium molybdate and 0.02% of boric acid are added to them. The second top dressing is done with phosphorus-potassium fertilizers. With dry top dressing, fertilizers are scattered over the soil surface, trying not to get them on the leaves and, especially, on the growing point, and then with the help of a hoe they are embedded in the soil. To protect young turnip plants from pests (cruciferous fleas), you can dust the turnip with tobacco dust, lime or ash at their first appearance.

Turnips are harvested for summer consumption selectively, as the root crops of the desired size are formed. The first harvests are possible when the root crops reach a diameter of 4-5 cm. Such root crops have a juicy, tender pulp and are rich in vitamins.

The first harvests of turnips can be obtained even earlier, with the "bunch" ripeness of plants, when the roots reach a diameter of 3-4 cm. At this time, the final thinning of the plants is done. For winter storage, the size of the root crops must be at least 6-8 cm.

Harvest in the fall is harvested in one step, preventing freezing of roots, otherwise the turnip will be poorly stored. Harvested in sunny weather to store dry root crops. It is impossible to leave the roots pulled out of the soil with tops for a long time - a significant amount of moisture evaporates through the leaves, and the roots quickly wither, which negatively affects storage. Cracked, damaged by keel, bacteriosis and dry rot, as well as unripe and overgrown (very large, cracked, ribbed) root crops are not suitable for winter storage. Store turnips in boxes at a temperature of 0 … + 1 ° C. At a higher temperature, the intensity of respiration increases and an excess amount of nutrients is consumed, turgor is lost, which favors the development of microorganisms. The optimum humidity in the room during storage of turnips is 90-95%.

Read the continuation of the article - Biology of turnip development and its relationship to environmental conditions

"Round, but not the sun, sweet but not honey …":

Part 1. Cultivation of turnips: agricultural technology, seed preparation, sowing, care

Part 2. Biology of turnip development and its relation to environmental conditions

Part 3. Use of turnip in medicine

Part 4 The use of turnips in cooking