Superweeds, radishes and new collection times

The tiny little radish has been a domesticated crop since pre-Roman times, and is a popular crop as it’s relatively easy to grow, and matures rapidly, making it ideal for children’s gardens, or impatient gardeners like me. Summer radishes in the sun can mature in as little as 3-4 weeks.

The radish is a different plant, though related, to horseradish, which is used as an inexpensive replacement for wasabi in most sushi restaurants.

Radishes are very high in Vitamin C, Potassium and Folate, and are a very good source of Dietary Fibre. They also contains high levels of Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, Magnesium, Manganese, Copper and Calcium.

The Mexican city of Oaxaca celebrates a festival called the Night of the Radishes on the 23rd of December. Huge radishes (up to 50cm) are carefully grown and then carved into remarkable sculptures, often of saints, or with a nativity theme.

We have radishes on offer from both Naturally Organic, a small farm in Philippi, and Appelsdrift Farm, in Napier.

Superweeds and GM crops
It’s not only in South Africa that Monsanto have discovered unwelcome surprises with their genetically-modified crops. I’ve written before about so-called superweeds, plants that have developed resistance to the herbicides developed in conjunction with genetically-modified crops. The problem, a predictable consequence of the twisted, warlike method of industrial farming, is worsening in the US heartland. In Macon County, Georgia, in the US, the epicentre of the occurence, 10,000 acres of cropland have been abandoned.

Today, 100,000 acres in Georgia are severely infested with pigweed, one of the resistant plants, and 29 counties have now confirmed resistance to glyphosate, used in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide, and designed for use with it’s genetically-modified seeds.

Farmers are resorting to hand-weeding, and as the costs of industrial farming escalate, with expensive seeds, and now increasing labour costs too, some farmers are starting to rebel, and go back to more effective farming methods, working with, rather than against the land.

Monsanto’s solution has been to use higher and higher levels of herbicide, and now, a new study reveals that the herbicide is associated with brain, intestinal and heart defects in foetuses, another hidden and deferred cost of this method on farming, and one that falls heavily on rural farmworkers.

New collection point times
We’re moving to our new, bigger and better warehouse in Philippi this week, so some of our collection point times will be changing. Most Wednesday times have stayed the same, but Thursday times have all been set back by delayed by between 30 minutes and an hour. Hout Bay collections will now be on Thursdays instead of Wednesdays.

All details are on the site, please make sure you’ve checked and are aware of any changes

We’re also still looking for more home collection points, particularly in Rondebosch, Observatory, Sea Point, the upper City Bowl and Lakeside/Muizenberg.

Rasayana Prash and S.O.I.L essential oils
We’ve been offering Rasayana Prash, the rejuvanating herbal drink, for a while now. Originally developed by an Ayurvedic clinic in India, it contains a combination of herbs and spices chosen for the rejuvenating and immune-boosting effects. The good news is it’s now available in a smaller, more affordable 200g biobag.

Back in stock after a long break are the S.O.I.L. certified organic essential oils. There are over 40 varieties in our Body Care section.

To order, head on over to

Have a great week enjoying the best organic food around,
the Ethical Co-op team