Wednesday, May 16, 2012

How to Grow Carrots

Every vegetable garden should grow at least one variety of carrots. Once you’ve grown them, I’m certain you’ll be hooked. I grew a row of 10 carrots wide by 25 feet long.

That’s a lot of carrots and to my surprise, although I have a bunny running around the garden at night, not one of the carrots was destroyed! I will admit that a few of the leaves were eaten, but no digging or other damage.

I started all of my carrots by seed, and yes it is a little tough planting all of those tiny seeds, but the benefits were quite obviously worth the trouble. 

I prepared the soil with plenty of compost and raised the bed up to as high as 18 inches. I planted in a row three feet wide, which equaled to a thinned row of ten carrots per row. 

I also planted each row three inches apart, so, my calculations tell me that at harvest time, barring any lose to rabbits, insects and diseases; I could easily harvest 1,000 carrots…That’s a lot of rabbit food.
After the seed germinated, I thinned the plants to three inches apart. I then spent the next several weeks watching them grow. 

Carrots have a beautiful, fernlike top, so it was a pleasure watching them wave in our Texas breezes. I checked them daily as they grew, and enjoyed the growth spurts after a wonderful rain, or after fertilizing.
Because I planted early, I had very little problem with pests. Right as I began to harvest some of them, I noticed some small grasshoppers starting to get interested in the tops. 

While harvesting, I noticed a caterpillar starting to munch. This caterpillar was so very small, that I could not really tell what it was, and quite honestly at this point I did not care.
I processed the carrots by cutting off the tops. Those tops immediately went back into the compost pile. I then cleaned them and did any necessary additional trimming. I put them on ice and made a plan for canning them.
Once I found a good recipe, I broke out the canning gear and got busy in the kitchen. 16 pints later and I have a great feeling of accomplishment. To know that I can feed my family by the planning and hard work put into my vegetable garden just makes me feel really good.

I hope you are having some of the same successes as I am having. Please feel free to join us on my Facebook page, where I hope you will come and participate by asking questions, and posting your photos.


  1. What month did you plant these? I am in northern Louisiana with probably similar weather to you.

    1. Thank you for asking Kay. I planted the seed in late February. As you may know, we had absolutely no real winter in areas of the south. Our weather here in the Dallas, Texas area also allowed me to plant most of my garden between late Feb and the beginning of March (with some plants being protected of course!). I did take some risk, but I protected everything I thought I needed to.

  2. Once again I envy your weather. I planted my carrots just a few weeks ago and last night we had a 38 degree scare. Anyway the self watering mother nature does for us here makes up for a lot though...

    1. Don't envy me Deb. Our weather is extremely HOT by the end of May.


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