Country Lore: Dig a Bucket-Size Root Cellar

A 5-gallon bucket and bucket-size hole are all you need to make a simple root cellar for carrots.

| October/November 2010

For sweet, crisp carrots all winter, we always left them in the ground under a thick layer of leaves or straw to keep them from freezing. But digging carrots in midwinter was not my idea of fun.

I wanted a better way to store the carrots, so I made a miniature root cellar right in the garden. First, I cut the bottom from a 5-gallon bucket. Then I dug a bucket-size hole in the ground just deep enough so the top of it was flush with the ground. I filled the bucket with just-dug carrots, placed the lid on the bucket and plopped a bale of straw on top for insulation.

My winter carrots stay sweet and crisp — just as they did in the ground.

Chriss Stutzman
Navarre, Ohio

david g
1/23/2013 8:27:55 PM

onions are best stored in a dry light airy place in the ground with moisture they will rot

Tennille Onyx
1/16/2013 2:11:06 PM

Will this work with potatoes???

Anita Welch
1/10/2013 3:15:30 PM

That is a crazy good idea. I know that my husband talks about stacking old tires one on top of the other to plant potato plants. We have such a hard time getting our gardens to grow in the last few years. We live in the Oklahoma panhandle and it is so very hot that we either loose our veggie plants and leaves to grasshoppers or the extreme heat burns them up. Any good suggesstions other than watering more? We are on a limited budget so we can't afford to buy a greenhouse. Wish we could that way we could have food year round. :-)

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