This is the first year we've had fair success with carrots. Our soil is mostly hard pan that we've been amending for several seasons. We had been growing carrots and onions and garlic in raised beds because our main garden is so full of clay these root vegetables have a tendency to grow wonky in the tough soil. (Potatoes don't seem to have this problem....thank goodness. I couldn't be without my potatoes!) But I need the raised beds for veggies that are hard for me to grow out here in the bald naked prairie. The raised beds should be dedicated to special vegetables that are so challenging that I need to baby them and cover them and fret over them (like basil). Plus, I just flat out need more carrots than our raised beds can supply.
The crop was a bit small but any success comes with valuable information for next year.
What we learned: Thinning is important. Thin those babies before they get big enough to attach themselves together.
|Entwined carrots (IE: lazy farmer)|
Water. I'm pretty sure that along with the carrots being too close together, the smallish crop could have been due to low water availability. Usually we don't have to worry about watering in the spring. Often the newly planted seedlings have too much water in the form of rain and the seeds are in jeopardy of rotting. But this year we had a fairly dry spring which produced spotty germination. Carrots take forever to germinate. So a dry seed bed plus otherwise slow germination makes for unpredictable results.
Ok... so now I know!
I can't wait for next spring! I can feel LOTS of carrots in our future.
Next post? Storage!!!