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How to Grow Carrots at Home


Date Posted: February 10, 2016

Seeds of the Month Club by Mike the Gardener How to Grow Carrots at Home
photo credit: Mike the Gardener

Carrots are a fun vegetable to grow from seed. You can even give growing them from carrot tops a try, although I enjoy from seed a lot more. What makes it fun is that they are a root crop. That means the vegetable portion of the carrot plant (if you will), grows underground. You won’t have any idea how big the carrot is until you actually harvest it. What can I say. I am a sucker for mystery.

I have always found there is no need to start your carrots from seed indoors because carrot seed germinates rather quickly, and carrots, in my own experience, do not transplant well.

CARROT SEED PLANTING DEPTH AND SPACING

Carrot seeds are fairly small therefore you do not want to plant them very deep. If you plant carrot seeds too deep, when they germinate, the carrot greens won’t be able to create enough energy to get to the surface to soak up the sun it needs to grow. I recommend no deeper than a quarter of an inch.

Unlike many other popular varieties of vegetables, i.e. cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers etc., one carrot seed produces only one carrot, therefore when planting your carrot seeds, place one seed per location and plant them, for most varieties, every eight to twelve inches. This will utilize your available “real estate” at the same time, giving your carrots plenty of space to grow.

How to Grow Carrots at Home

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DAYS TO GERMINATION AND MATURITY

Once planted, you can expect most varieties of carrots to germinate in as little as 12 days, the normal is closer to 18 days though. You can help speed this process up by soaking your seeds for four hours prior to planting. Simply take your seeds and drop them in a cup of water for four hours. Once soaked, carefully dump the water out making sure you do not lose any of your seeds, then proceed with planting them as noted above.

Here is the mystery part of carrots, not knowing what lies beneath the soil`s surface. With that said, carrots mature in the 60 to 80 day range, although you can pick them sooner as smaller sizes taste very sweet. I don’t recommend that you harvest your carrots, find out they aren’t big enough and then replant them. They do not respond well to that treatment.

How to Grow Carrots at Home

CARING FOR YOUR CARROTS

When planting your carrot seeds, make sure you select a sunny location (at least 6 hours), in a part of your garden where your soil is friable. Meaning, your soil should be very light and crumble easily in your hands. Work a lot of compost into your soil about 2 weeks prior to planting so that your carrots will have plenty of nutrients to pull from as the season goes on.

When it comes to watering, make sure your soil is moist and not saturated. Overwatering can kill your carrots. For feeding, I like to use an organic fish emulsion every four weeks. You can also layer on top of the soil some more compost as well.

Happy gardening!


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Mike the gardener

About the Author

Mike Podlesny is the author of the book Vegetable Gardening for the Average Person as well as the creator of the Seeds of the Month Club where members receive non gmo, heirloom variety seeds every month. You can listen to Mike each week on the Vegetable Gardening Podcast where he interviews gardening industry experts. Don`t forget to link up with Mike on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.


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KEYWORDS:

how to grow carrots from carrot tops, how to grow carrots in containers, how to grow carrots from seed, how to grow carrots indoors, how to grow carrots from seed indoors



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