Carrots are one of the most popular vegetables in the world and can be used in many dishes, try and grow them with this handy guide!
Carrots are something you’d probably find in just about every households vegetable draw, thanks to their versatility and flavour profile.
They are some of the easiest vegetables for beginner gardeners to grow and can be grown almost anywhere with very minimal knowledge.
We teach you how to plant, care for and harvest your carrots with extra tips and common problems you may face when attempting to grow your own.
How To Plant Carrots
The best place to plant carrots is in an open sunny site with fertile and well-drained soil. Stones or heavy clay within the ground could stunt the growth of your crops.
They should be spaced 6-12 inches apart in holes sewn roughly at about a half-inch deep. This will make sure you don’t have to thin them out.
Cover the seeds with light soil and water gently to minimise disturbance. Keep the soil moist until the seeds germinate, which usually takes between 10-20 days.
How To Care For Carrots
Your seedlings might end up too close together, thin out the weakest plants to give each of them room to grow and prevent them from competing for nutrients.
Carrots will very rarely need water as they are drought resistant. However, in a dry spell, they would benefit from a good soaking.
Weeds can quickly crowd you carrot crop and outcompete them, so regular weeding by hands in between the rows is essential.
How To Harvest Carrots
Your carrots should be ready to harvest 12-16 weeks after you have sown them providing you have given them the best care possible.
You should pick them as soon as they are large enough to use, aiming for larger roots will only sacrifice the flavour of your crops.
Make sure to lift your carrots carefully to avoid damaging them, and if the soil is too heavy or clumped, you should think about using a fork.
If you’ve had an excellent yield of carrots you might be stumped with what you can do with them all, use these recipes to make sure they don’t go to waste!
Tips & Commons Problems
Carrot flies produce larvae that feed on the roots of carrots. There is no way to get rid of them once they get in so to prevent you can use netting and sow sparsely.
When weeding or thinning your carrots, you should be careful not to crush the foliage. The smell of this attracts the carrot flies so cover with a tunnel or barriers.
If you don’t have a good amount of open ground, you can try carrot varieties with shorter roots in containers such as the “`”Early Nantes” or “Chantenay Red Cored.”
Aphids or greenflies will be found on the leaves of your carrots and can suck the life out of them and encourage mould growth. You can deal with these by hand.