DIY Network

How to Grow Horseradish

Horseradish is a hardy perennial beloved for its spicy flavored roots. Plant this once for a continual harvest for years to come.

More in Outdoors

horseradish does not have pests or many diseases
  • Time

    Several Weekends

  • Price Range

    $1 - $50

  • Difficulty

    Easy to Moderate


Step 1: Purchase the Roots

Horseradish is a fast-growing hardy perennial beloved for its spicy flavored roots. Horseradish is a member of the mustard family, and it is typically planted in root form. Gardeners can either purchase the roots from a garden center or simply grab some at the local farmers market.

fresh horseradish is a fiery root vegetable

Step 2: Prepare the Site

Horseradish is one of the most invasive vegetables in the garden. For that reason, the patch should be placed away from the main garden beds. Because it comes back year after year, it should also be placed in a spot where it can be left alone. Pick a sunny patch and work the soil with a garden fork to a depth of 8" to 12". Even though horseradish will do fine without it, consider adding some balanced fertilizer to the bed for a quick start.

horseradish needs good soil so root grows straight

Step 3: Plant the Horseradish

In early spring, dig a hole that is a little deeper than the root. Place the root with the pointy end down in the hole so that the top is just below the soil line. Fill the hole with soil and lightly tamp it down. Water well.

lay horseradish at an angle to plant

Step 4: Cultivate Plants

If the soil gets dry, water it as needed to keep the roots lightly moist. Mulch around the plants with straw to keep the soil warm and discourage weed growth. Horseradish doesn't have pest problems since most bugs can't handle the hot flavor.

straw layer will keep soil warm for horseradish

Step 5: Harvest the Horseradish

Most gardeners harvest horseradish roots in the fall, after the first hard frost. Harvest horseradish plants one at a time as needed. Loosen the soil and gently remove the plant from the ground. Separate the root from the crown with a knife and replant the crown for next year’s harvest.

Tip: Wear gloves when handling horseradish as it can irritate the skin.

remove a few roots from horseradish and replant