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Carrots

posted in Roots and Stems |




Carrot Cultivation Requirements

Soil

Well drained fertile soil. Do not plant on soil that has been freshly manured as this could lead to rotting. If you have stony or heavy clay soils, go for the stump or round carrots not the long traditional carrot shape as the longer roots will either fork or be stunted. Grow bags for round or stump-rooted will suffice at a push or try containers with any type of carrot.

Position

Open sunny site.

Crop Rotation

It’s traditional to grow carrots on soil that hasn’t recently been manured, but there is little evidence that it affects crops or forks and splits carrots.

Carrots Varieties

VarietyComments
Carrot Amsterdam Forcing 3One of the earliest varieties to mature, regular shape.
Autumn King 2Traditional favourite, regular shape.
Carrot Bolero F1Outstanding flavour, regular shape.
Chantenay Red CoredStump variety
Early NantesPopular variety, regular shape.
Adelaide AGMEarly crops, regular shape
BangorHeavy yields, fatter but regular shape
EskimoThe most cold-tolerant variety, short stump shape
Maestro AGMSmooth skin, uniform shape and size, regular shape.
Parmex AGMRound rooted, for shallow soils/containers.
Purple HazeCombines great taste and vigorous growth, regular shape, purple colour.
SamuraiThe big ‘red’ carrot, regular shape, long roots.
YellowstoneYellow carrots, regular shape. High in Vitamin A, C, and beta carotene, tasty and easy to grow.
Red IntermediateIdeal for exhibition. A very long, pointed carrot. Excellent for winter storage and exhibition.
FlyawayMaincrop, medium length, regular shape. Good resistance to carrot root fly.
St. ValeryVery reliable. Reliable maincrop variety producing long, tapering roots; excellent for winter storage.
NelsonExcellent when young. This superb Nantes type variety produces smooth skinned cylindrical roots of excellent quality.

When To Sow Carrots

Carrot Planting Plan
 JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Sow
Harvest

Carrot Spacing & Depth

Seeds should be sown thinly, in drills 1cm (½ inch), rows 15cm (6 inch) apart.

Sow thinly to avoid thinning later on. Thinning will leave a scent for the carrot root fly.
If the soil is dry, water the drill and allow it to drain before sowing the seed.

Care of Carrots

Carrots are generally drought resistant and like hot weather, seldom needing water, especially if you have a good water retentive soil. If they wilt and go grey, a thorough soak every 10-14 days will be needed.

Hoe weeds in between rows and hand weed close to the plant to avoid damaging the carrot root. Thin to 5cm (2 inch) between plants and use thinnings as baby carrots.

Cover or surround(like a fence) the crop with a barrier of fleece, fine mesh or polythene to protect from carrot root fly during late Spring and Summer.

Common Carrot Problems

Carrot Root Fly

Carrot Root Fly are low flying insects that are attracted by the smell of the carrots and will lay their eggs next to the plants. The larvae tunnel into and eat the carrot.

Avoid touching the carrot tops or sowing seed thickly, as you will have to touch the plants to thin them out. Cover or surround(like a fence) the crop with a barrier of fleece, fine mesh or polythene to protect from carrot root fly during late Spring and Summer.

Harvesting Carrots

Plants are ready to harvest 12-16 weeks after sowing. You can pull them early for baby carrots with a sweeter taste or leave longer for larger roots and for storage. If pulling doesn’t lift the roots easily then lift as you would Onions or Garlic, with a fork.

Storing Carrots

Best kept in the soil. Remove the foliage in late Autumn and cover with a few inches of straw or thick layer of cardboard, keeping out of the rain with polythene.

Carrots can be lifted in the Winter if your soil is prone to waterlogging and stored in a box of sand.

Nutrition & Health

Carrot is one of the richest food in beta-carotene. Beta-carotene gives the orange color of the carrots and our body transforms it into vitamin A.

The carotene has an antioxidant property which may reduce the risk of certain cancer and aging disease.

You don’t need to peel carrots, a lott of the nutrients are in the skin, just scrub them clean for maximum benefit.

Carrots help you have;

  • healthy skin
  • good night vision
  • regulate transit in our intestines due to the fibre and cellulose
  • the pectin they contain helps us in case of diarrohea
  • the fibre has a protective effect against colon cancer
  • may boost your immune system
  • lower the risk of lung cancer
  • carrots may lower blood cholesterol levels
  • may increase lactation

Apparently, the molecule responsible for the red color in tomatoes enhances the body’s absorption of beta-carotene. Try to combine them together in a salad or in a casserole.

Warning
 
Too many carrots can make your skin turn yellow-orange!! It is a reversible condition, your skin will return to normal if you stop eating carrots. It may take a couple of weeks though.
 
People like to eat carrots to prepare themselves to sun exposure. Be careful, it does not preserve from sunburns.

 Nutrient Units Value per 100g Raw Value per 100g cooked, drained(without salt)
Proximates
Water
g
88.29
90.17
Energy
kcal
41
35
Protein
g
0.93
0.76
Total fat
g
0.24
0.18
Carbohydrate
g
9.58
8.22
Fibre, total dietary
g
2.8
3.0
Sugars, total
g
4.74
3.45
Sucrose
g
3.59
2.7
Glucose (dextrose)
g
0.59
0.4
Fructose
g
0.55
0.36
Lactose
g
0
0
Maltose
g
0
0
Galactose
g
0
0
Starch
g
1.43
0.17
Minerals
Calcium, Ca
mg
33
30
Iron, Fe
mg
0.3
0.34
Magnesium, Mg
mg
12
10
Phosphorus, P
mg
35
30
Potassium, K
mg
320
235
Sodium, Na
mg
69
58
Zinc, Zn
mg
0.24
0.20
Copper, Cu
mg
0.045
0.017
Manganese, Mn
mg
0.143
0.155
Fluoride, F
µg
3.2
47.5
Selenium, Se
µg
0.1
0.7
Vitamins
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid
mg
5.9
3.6
Thiamin
mg
0.066
0.066
Riboflavin
mg
0.058
0.044
Niacin
mg
0.983
0.645
Pantothenic acid
mg
0.273
0.232
Vitamin B-6
mg
0.138
0.153
Folate, total
µg
19
14
Folic acid
µg
0
0
Folate, food
µg
19
14
Folate, DFE
µg_DFE
19
14
Choline, total
µg
8.8
8.8
Vitamin B-12
µg
0
0
Vitamin A, IU
IU
16706
17033
Vitamin A, RAE
RAE
835
852
Retinol
µg
0
0
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)
mg
0.66
1.03
Vitamin K (phylloquinone)
µg
13.2
13.7
Other
Cholesterol
mg
0
0
Alcohol, ethyl
g
0
0
Caffeine
mg
0
0
Theobromine
mg
0
0
Carotene, beta
µg
8285
8332
Carotene, alpha
µg
3477
3776
Cryptoxanthin, beta
µg
0
0
Lycopene
µg
1
0
Lutein + zeaxanthin
µg
256
687

Carrot Hints & Tips

Carrots stored out of the ground will lose flavour and texture. They are suitable for freezing.

Raw carrots have the most flavour, steamed have the next most flavour and boiling them reduces flavour and health benefits even more.

Carrot Recipes

Have you got any Carrot recipes? Add a comment below and we’ll add it.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, February 13th, 2008 at 12:45 pm and is filed under Roots and Stems. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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Commenter Avatar On April 19th, 2012 at 8:18 pm,
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[…]Carrots : Gardening Zone.org[…]…

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