From mouth-watering cake to healthy salads, carrots are one of the most versatile vegetables out there. No wonder everybody loves some fresh carrots. However, purchasing carrots from grocery stores may seem troublesome to you. Not only this does not ensure the highest fresh quality, but buying from organic stores may also prove quite harsh on your pockets.
But don’t worry! You can grow carrots even in your backyard now. If cared properly with water, light and fertilizer; growing carrots are no big deal.
Growing Carrots is Easy!
Carrots do not require a long harvesting period; it approximately takes 50 days from sowing to harvesting. When it comes to temperature, low temperature is the best for growing some delicious carrots. The optimum time for carrots is spring and fall. So, plant your carrots during these seasons to get the perfect carrots.
As mentioned before, carrots can easily be grown into your backyard. However, sandy soils are ideal to grow these root vegetables. Before planting the seeds, the soil needs to be cleared and prepared properly. All the weeds, rocks and stones need to be removed thoroughly.
After that, we need to prepare some beds so the whole plating process becomes far easier. The beds should maintain certain measurements such as every bed should maintain 1-2 feet distance and should have around 12 inches of depth. Also in order to ensure proper growth, the ridges need to perfect so air and water can be passed easily.
When it comes to planting carrot seeds, we need to be extra careful. Though many people love transplanting to compensate for slow germination, the roots are quite fragile so most people recommend direct planting the seeds.
After planting the seeds, they shouldn’t be covered with a heavy amount of soil. The seeds shouldn’t be covered with more than 0.5 inches of soil. As mentioned before, this site needs to be full of sunlight and also needs to maintain the ideal temperature.
Fertilizing and Watering
Fertilizer can speed up the process and help you grow some beautiful carrots. Though nowadays most people prefer chemical fertilizer, coffee beans can work wonders for carrots. However, many people tend to go overboard with fertilizers. This is a big no-no!
Moreover, carrots do not require a high level of nitrogen in the soil so using excessive nitrogen-rich fertilizer can be harmful. For this reason, while using chemical fertilizers, you need to choose the one which is rich in phosphate and potassium. The fertilizing should start after our carrots show a 3-inch growth.
Watering is one of the most crucial aspects of growing your carrots. Water keeps the soil moisture which is needed for germination. They can take as long as 3 weeks for germination, so maintaining the water in the soil is important for this time period.
So, whenever your loamy soil may seem a little bit dry, do water them. In countries with high temperatures, this process may seem tiresome. As a result, people use other methods to water the plant continuously. Many people also slow the evaporation process by using beams or covers. So, you should focus on giving this water regularly.
Keeping Plants Safe
You may think there is not much to do after your carrot seeds sprout. But you’re definitely wrong! This brown plant will soon start attracting many worms and even flies. If not taken care of properly, this may end up spoiling all of your previous efforts.
The greatest natural enemy of your carrots is – carrot rust flies. The larvae of these green flies can seriously damage the carrots. These white larvae can rot the roots of carrots easily and as a result, the carrots remain with black leaves.
In order to fight these, one should use bed covers so these flies cannot lay eggs over the growing carrots. Some growers also advise delaying the sowing period to summer when it is less threatening.
Another natural enemy to avoid is the wireworm. These reddish-brown worms can damage the roots and as a result, the carrots get spoiled. Another reason why carrots are quite vulnerable to these is their preference for moist soil. For this reason, watering should be done carefully.
The plants need to be weeded carefully to ensure proper nutrients and you should also look out for diseases such as carrot yellows disease, vegetable soft rot etc. for maintaining healthy carrots.
Carrots can be harvested after getting mature, which takes only 2-4 months. While some people prefer their carrots small and crunchy, many people like them a little bit big. The harvesting normally starts after defrosting, as that is when the carrots are full of sugar and flavor.
These beautiful carrots can be stored in containers or storage space at low temperatures (around 0⸰C). Even the garden can store these during winter if you do not want the extra hassle of containers or storage.
This depends primarily on the soil, weather and personal preference. Not all types of climate can support every variety. As previously mentioned, sandy airy soil is ideal and can harvest most of these varieties.
However, hard soils cannot support carrots that have soft and short roots. For this reason, you should choose the variety that goes with your soil and climate.
Even if you’re not a vegetable lover, a sweet crunchy carrot is appreciated by everyone. So if you’re someone who has some time to spare or wants to try something new, try growing your carrots!
Even though the first time you may grow some unusual shaped carrots, nothing can beat the taste of your garden-grown vegetables. So, don’t hesitate and try this out soon. All you need to do is read a little bit and devote some time to enjoy some garden-grown beautiful orange carrots!