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Look what turned up!

My very first homegrown turnip ever! I have never grown turnips, we rarely ate them growing up. I remember going to the grocery store with my mom as a kid. Whenever she came across an exotic new vegetable she would turn and ask a fellow shopper how to cook it, if no one was around to tell her, she’d buy it anyway. That’s how turnips made it into our diet. None of us were real enthused about them boiled and mashed.Looking them up in her cookbook she found out that they were good raw in salads like radishes. In those days it was hard to find  plantains, yucca and jicama in the supermarket and she has always been willing to try new things. I think of her when I am grocery shopping and encounter a new fruit or vegetable.

The tops are going in a stir fry and the turnip itself is getting chopped up with a couple of tiny radishes for a salad.

Tomatoes and basil seem to be growing the best, we’re constantly picking and eating those. There are three small bell peppers, a tiny spaghetti squash, several eggplant blossoms that hopefully will become fruit and the snow peas have blossoms too!

About Theresa Diaz Gray

Born in New York City, I grew up in California, and have lived in 3 countries and 6 states. I'm a first generation Cuban-American who lives in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. I'm committed to living an abundant and creative life and helping others do so too through DIY!


  1. If you ever get a chance try sauteed beet greens. Very tasty.

  2. Brenda, I only planted five of them. I may plant a few more next year since these were successful.
    The leaves lose the fuzziness when cooked like mustard does. I had my doubts but tried it anyway.

    Leslie, I had read about turnip greens being edible, also radish greens which are similar but never eaten any before. The taste was like extra bitter chard. Not bad, but probably better like Jonna suggested. Asians stirfry a lot of greens, most of which aren’t available here.

    Steve, I have no ambitions in that direction, so I don’t plant much more than we can eat with maybe a little to give away.

    Jonna, if you want some greens you can have them. I only planted four or five turnips though so you had better hurry.


  3. Funny about the other comments, I never liked the turnip itself – and neither did my mother – but we often ate turnip greens. It’s a southern US thing I guess, my mom was from the south. Turnip greens boiled with some vinegar and tabasco sauce, she’d put a piece of bacon in there too… yum!

  4. Pretty soon you will be selling your produce in the local market.

  5. Every time I read your gardening posts, I wish I had a green thumb!

    I haven’t had a turnip in ages. And like Brenda, I had no idea the leaves were edible.

  6. Yum turnip. I love it raw or boiled and mashed with salt, pepper and butter.
    We grew up eating them and I used to grow them in Canada all the time.
    I had no idea those fuzzy leaves were good in stir fry or maybe they don’t get the fuzz on them until they are older, not sure never really thought of eating their leaves, unlike many other veggies.

  7. Debbie,
    I think you will find it very different from Canada.
    From what I understand we’re pretty much the same as South Florida as to climate and growing seasons.
    It’s been my experience that April thru June are too hot and humid for most things. The planting season starts in July with the rains.
    I am totally amazed that some the peas and Brussels sprouts that I planted are still alive, many of them withered away from the heat.

  8. Hi Theresa, Great turnip! They remind me of my mother; she really loved them. I’m curious about vegetable gardening in the Yucatan – do you have to plant at a different time of year than in the north? Or can you plant any time of year?

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