Horseradish - Key Growing Information

A box of horseradish roots at market; pungency is highest when harvested in spring and diminishes over time.


Armoracia rusticana


Well-drained, friable soil with a pH range of 6.2-6.8 will yield the best results. When roots are received, work the soil about a foot deep and incorporate compost, manure, or fertilizer. Make a 5-6" deep furrow and plant root cuttings 12" apart, slanted 2-3" deep with the flat-cut end up. Irrigate if soil is dry and as needed throughout season. For smoother, larger primary root harvest, carefully remove secondary or side roots as crop grows (known as "lifting"). Save side roots for re-planting. If producing a wild-root or field-run crop, this process is not needed.


Roots can be harvested in late fall when 8-10" long and 2-3" in diameter, or in early spring before re-growth (dig roots before plant leafs out to maintain pungency). A hard frost will sweeten the flavor of horseradish. Lift plants up with spading forks or shovel, being careful not to damage the thick, fleshy tap roots.


Store trimmed, washed roots in perforated plastic bags or containers in refrigerator, unwashed roots in root cellar. Ideal temperature is 32-33°F (0-.1°C).