|Carrots are an easy to grow root crop. They will grow in any soil but clay soil can present a challenge. Compost or peat moss worked into the clay will help to loosen the soil, retain moisture and remedy boron or manganese deficiencies. It also allow the carrots to grown uninhabited and to not break off when they are pulled. Do not use fresh manure as it causes the carrots to grow branchy, hairy, fibrous roots. An extra dose of potassium (wood ashes is a good source) contains highly soluble potassium that reaches the plants quickly. You can side dress with 1 lb. of 5-10-10 per 50 sq. ft. of garden area.One word of caution: there is a saying, “what’s good for the goose is not always good for the gander”!!! Be very careful in using wood ashes on your garden. It can lock the nutritients up in your soil by raising the pH–I did it once.
Carrots grow best in soils that have few clumps or rocks. When the tap root touches impenetrable clay or a rock it simply stops growing or will branch out forming a two finger carrot. Carrots also do well in block planting.
Carrots take 10 days to germinate and need very moist soil. Some gardeners will lay moist burlap bags or clear plastic over the soil after planting. After carrots are 1-2 inches tall, thin to 3 inches apart.
|Harvesting: Carrots are ready to harvest in 2-3 months when they are 1/2 inch in diameter. Carrots keep well in the ground unless it is extremely hot. For this reason, fall is a better time to plant. In the fall, harvest after the first hard frost but before the ground freezes.
Matures in 72 days. Roots are 5-6″ long, tender, deep orange-red flesh, and smooth tapering.
Danver Half Long
Matures in 75 days. Roots are deep orange and longer than Chantenay, tender, crisp and store well.
Matures in 65 days. Grows 3-1/2 inches long. They are smooth with a very thin core.
*I personally do not grow carrots. They aren’t worth my time for the few we eat. I basically use them in fresh salads and a package bought in the store keeps so well in the refrigerator.