Growing Carrots – My First Crop

Though I may have been growing veggies for many years, I’ve never harvested a carrot crop. A few of these tasty veg were sown on the allotment but as soon as the summer season arrived, I always got busy, the crops got weedy and nothing ever came of the carrots. This year I set about growing three different varieties in my no-dig raised beds and, upon pulling some up today, am amazed!

The three varieties were Amsterdam F1, Purplehaze and Yellowstone. I found poor germination of the Amsterdam, despite thinking they’d probably be the best. In fact, whilst I had to thin out the purple and yellow carrots a lot, I was actually plugging gaps with Amsterdam.

Yellowstone, Amsterdam F1 and Purplehaze

A few things I’ve learned:

  • I left Yellowstone in the ground for too long. Despite being sown at the same time as the others, it grew more vigorously and, as a result, the larger ones are a little woody. In fact, one had sent up a flowering stalk. Oops. Must pay more attention to harvesting. 
  • My soil was probably too rich in manure. I filled the beds with chicken manure and I think this has attributed to the fibrous roots and some of the splits seen. I won’t add so much poop next year. 
  • Yellowstone, when small, is extremely sweet. Yummy!
  • Also…carrots are EASY to grow. I’ve hardly done anything with these. They were direct sown next to onions in a bid to keep the carrot fly away <- this has also been helped by using a raised bed with a lip (carrot flies aren’t very good at flying, actually, so can’t zip up and over things).

The season for sowing carrots is FAR from over, and if you read the back of packets, you’ll note you can sow through till mid-July. I’m going to sow some in August too just as an experiment; we get warm autumns here in the UK and small carrots are delicious so I may as well try for another crop.

Now…to investigate how to store these lovely crops to make the harvests last longer.

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Hi,

I'm Geoff, and I'm a plant hoarder.

Like magpies collect bright shiny things, I can't resist plants. An exquisite flower, soft ferny foliage or a beautiful majestic tree - I love them all!

Here, I'll indulge in all things flora and share my passion. Join me as I develop my garden and hoard more plants without apology.