Growing Carrots

By: Meriel Bradley

Carrots are easy to grow from seed once you get the hang of the basics.

Carrot seed can be planted directly in the ground once the soil can be worked in early spring. I’m in zone 5 and I can generally get my first seeds in around the 2nd or 3rd week of April.

You want a nice sunny location and loose rich soil that has no rocks or stones. If you have hard clay, you will want to grow them in a raised bed that is 8 to 12 inches high with good quality soil.

Plant in rows that are about 12 inches apart – I like to make my rows into mounds – place the seeds 1/4 of an inch deep and then cover lightly with soil. The seeds are very fine so try not to over seed your rows.

They take 2 to 3 weeks to germinate and don’t like to dry out so give them frequent shallow waterings until they germinate.

When your seedlings are an inch tall with 3 to 4 true leaves, thin them so that they are about 3 to 4 inches apart. This is a delicate process so be prepared to take your time so you don’t disturb the soil around the ones you are leaving to grow. As you get better at spreading the fine seed you will have less density to thin out.

Keep them watered and plant a new batch every 4 weeks until mid-summer for a continuous harvest.

Zone

annual

Spacing:

in rows 12 inches apart

Light:

sun

Quick Facts

Direct sow in mid-April or when the ground is workable

Make sure you have a light loose rich soil with no rocks or stones

Germinates in 2 – 3 weeks

Likes full sun

Thin rows once seedlings are about an inch tall

Keep the soil moist

Plant every 4 weeks for a continual harvest

Harvesting in the fall after a frost will make your carrots sweeter

Good companion plants for carrots are; beans, brassicas, chives, leeks, lettuce, onions, peas, peppers, radish, rosemary, sage, and tomatoes

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