I can not seem to grow carrots or should I say carrots of any size. They are 1/4" in diameter and 2" long. I have tried in raised beds and in a conventional garden. My soil is sandy as I live on the coast. I used to live in-land where the soil was hard clay. I added tons and tons of organic matter and rototilled and the soil was better but still heavy but I had fantastic carrots. I can grow great beets, tomatores and just about any other root crop but not carrots. Any ideas?
Have you checked your soil pH? Heavy soils tend to be alkaline - that might have been why they grew well. Sandy soils tend to be acidic and carrots don't like that. And this is true for Central Texas. Other areas, the reverse may be true. But it's worth a check!
Last year I bought some wild ones (pretty white, orange and purple) from a local organic farmer and fed the greens to my chickens, or so I thought. This spring a huge amount of carrots just sprouted willynilly across a empty piece of land that hasn't been manured in decades (we'd just cleared it). The feathery carrotgreen looks amazing when it's covering a whole area instead of growing in near rows. I let them grow and right now I'm harvesting huge carrots, straight, 4 cm thick and 20 cm long, from soil that has never been tilled, manured or anything. Meanwhile, the official crop in the vegatable plot is looking pathetic. So I've decided to let a few of those wild carrots go to seed again and see where they will pop up again next year. I think it's the heirloom caracter of these carrots that makes them hardy. The normal organic seeds are the boring, orange kind, and they need a lot more pampering. So maybe switching seeds might be a good bet for next year. Try a different variaty.
Location: Portland Maine
posted 8 years ago
Thanks Cat. I have tried a few different variaties but I could try more.
Often heirloom seeds that are common to a certain area are the most hardy in that region too. In the Netherlands we have a few farms that focus on preserving and distributing those seeds. I don't know the laws of import/export regarding those seeds, but maybe you can find a heirloom grower in your area.
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