Learn How to Grow Carrots

Learn how to grow carrots with this helpful guide. Sweet, delicate carrots that can’t be found in supermarkets are among a home gardener’s greatest culinary rewards. By growing varieties suited to your soil, you can grow carrots in spring and fall, and the fall carrots can be left in the ground for harvesting in early winter. Includes tips on saving seeds for your next harvest, and pest and disease prevention tips.


| August/September 2008



Learn how to grow carrots in your garden. Carrot varieties vary greatly in color and shape. The different colors range from dark red to light yellow.

Learn how to grow carrots in your garden. Carrot varieties vary greatly in color and shape. The different colors range from dark red to light yellow.


Illustration by Keith Ward

Learn how to grow carrots. Choosing to grow crisp, delicious carrots of unique varieties in spring and fall can lead to great nutritious eating right from your backyard. Find out how to grow several varieties such as nantes, chantenay, imperator, miniature and danvers in your garden at home. By knowing the basics of when and how to plant, you can produce a successful harvest and have enough carrots to store throughout the year.

Learn How to Grow Carrots

(For details on growing many other vegetables and fruits, visit our Crop at a Glance collection page.)

Types of Carrots to Try

Nantes are fast and easy to grow, and adapt to a range of climates and soils.
Chantenay carrots develop stocky roots that become sweeter as the soil cools in the fall.
Miniature carrots have small, shallow roots that are often quite sweet. They’re good for heavy clay soil.
Imperator carrots are long and need deep, sandy soil to thrive.
Danvers carrots make great juice, and the sturdy roots store well, too.

For more details, see our chart with descriptions of each type, cultural tips and varieties.

Learn When to Plant Carrots

In the spring, sow carrot seeds in fertile, well-worked soil about two weeks before your last frost date. In cool climates, continue planting every three weeks until midsummer.

In summer, begin sowing seeds for fall and winter carrots 10 to 12 weeks before your average first fall frost. (To find your frost dates, click here and search for “frost dates.”) Many gardeners plant carrots after their spring peas are finished.

jason
4/20/2014 9:12:22 PM

Hey all. I need some advise on carrots. I started seeds about 2 weeks ago and they are starting to sprout. However, I ended up adding more than 1 seed to a cell. Im just wondering when and how to split them into their own cell.


cassatafamilyfarms
11/21/2013 8:06:06 AM

for growing any root crop you need a high level of phosphate in your soil because it focuses on the base/root of the plant (which you are eating)buy i fertilizer that is even in the nutrient ratio, look for a ratio that says 4-5-4 or 6-6-6. if you need help finding some i can post up some links.


dillonedwards
11/12/2013 2:47:17 PM

@Nellei Page 2 has information about fertilizers http://www.motherearthnews.com/organic-gardening/how-to-grow-carrots.aspx?PageId=2#axzz2kSyOD2KO


annette
9/25/2013 2:59:38 PM

Can you grow carrots without using seeds, i.e. from the carrot top? If not, how do you extract the seeds from the carrots? Do you have a picture of how the carrot tops should look before you start checking for mature carrots to be harvested?


nellei
8/2/2013 2:23:51 PM

  •    All this about carrots and not one word about soil ph or fertilizer-- some of us really do grow veggies.  HELP!!!!


dianep
5/17/2013 8:40:49 AM

Help!  Last year we planted 2 rows of carrots which came up as expected then once they were about an inch high they disappeared without a trace almost overnight.  It was as if they'd never existed.  The same has happened to our first row this year.  Any ideas as to what the problem could be?  Can't be rabbits as they are covered by netting.

 


tracey.till
4/24/2013 12:19:05 AM

haha I didn't know my post would be below the question. So my last post was a response to the grass question above.

 


tracey.till
4/24/2013 12:17:23 AM

In response to the question below, blades of grass, unless connected to healthy roots, cannot grow. If you chop off a grass leaf and stick it in the ground, it will die. You can use grass clippings from the lawn mower without worrying about growing grass where you don't want it. However, if you have a field of tall grass with ripened seedheads similar to wheat, chopping this down and putting it on your soil will grow grass because of the seeds. You can use grass clippings and weed clippings as long as there aren't living roots or seed heads.


triple c farm
7/7/2011 11:58:12 AM

Ok, I have read in several articles of using grass clipings to keep weeds down. Does this actually work? I was thinking that it would cause grass to grow there. Can someone explain how this process works?






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