Carrots May Be The First Vegetable You Ever Ate
Crunchy, sweet, yet kind of bitter at the same time, carrots are an enduring favorite vegetable among a large swath of the population: the average annual per capita consumption of fresh carrots in the U.S. over the past decade or so is 8.8 pounds. That’s a lot of carrots! And, we’re also guessing they might be one of the first vegetables—and, indeed, maybe even the first “solid” food—you were ever fed as a baby.
Interesting Facts About Carrots Plants
Carrots Gardening Tips
Ideally full sun (minimum of 6 hours) but carrots can tolerate some shade.
Keep carrots consistently moist. If they happen to dry out, don’t drench them with water to make up for it as that will cause their roots to split. As always, take care not to over-water when the seeds are first planted. Similar to most plants, early morning watering is best.
Loose soil is preferable though this variety can tolerate heavier soil than most. Enrich with mature compost before planting. Soil temperatures should be at least 50 degrees F.
60°F to 65°F
Direct sow 3 to 5 weeks before the anticipated last spring frost. Plant again every 2-3 weeks after that for continuous harvest. In zone 8 and warmer, plant in fall or winter.
Direct sow seeds outdoors 3-4″ apart in rows. Space rows at least 12″ apart.
14-21 days. Ideal germination temperature: 55-75°F; will not germinate above 95°F.
Add organic fertilizer sparingly to the soil 30 days after germination. Choose a formulation with more potassium and phosphate than nitrogen, such as 0-10-10 or 5-15-15.
Add mulch as seedlings develop to retain moisture and discourage weeds.
While carrots are resistant to insect pests and diseases, they are favorites of deer, rabbits, woodchucks and gophers and must be protected.
Weed regularly to eliminate any competition for water or nutrients.
Beans, Radish, Lettuce, Tomatoes, Onions, Peas. Don’t plant with Anise, Dill or Parsley.
Yes, at least 12″ deep. A bigger container is better.
Carrots’ flavor improves as they grow. You can harvest them as soon as they’re big enough to eat, or you can wait until they all mature for a single harvest. Harvesting will be easier if you soak their garden bed with water before pulling them up. In northern climates, be sure to harvest them before the ground freezes. Otherwise, you could leave them in the ground all winter, harvesting them when the ground thaws as long as you cover them with at least a foot of mulch. Cutting the greens off after harvest will ensure they keep longer. Refrigerate in a plastic bag.
- Carrots are a popular root vegetable that are easy to grow.
- They’re relatively slow-growing but the seeds can be sown outside early in spring as they can tolerate cool temperatures.
- Direct sow these seeds in the outdoor garden; carrots do not like to be transplanted.
- The seed variety we sell—Danvers Half Long—is a popular heirloom seed originating in 1871. It is a reliable producer yielding large, firm, tasty orange carrots.
- It will grow best in loose, well-worked soil, though the roots of this “blocky” variety can push through heavier soils than many other carrot varieties.
- Like many vegetables you can grow in your garden, carrots are low in calories and high in fiber. They’re a great source of vitamins and beta carotene which promotes good eyesight as well as a healthy immune system. They are 88% water which makes them hydrating as well.
Our Carrots Varieties
- 9 cups peeled and chopped tomatoes (peel first, see below)
- 2 1/2 cups chopped green bell peppers
- 2 1/2 cups chopped white onion
- 4 medium jalapeños, chopped (substitute 2 of the jalapeños for 2 cayenne peppers for extra hot salsa)
- 8 large cloves garlic, chopped
- 6 teaspoons canning salt
- 1 cup white vinegar
- 1 (12 ounce) can tomato paste
- Remove tomato skins. Make an “X” in the bottom of the tomatoes, then place in boiling water for 60 seconds. Then, remove the tomatoes from the water and place directly into an ice bath. The skins should slip right off.
- Make the salsa. Place all of the ingredients in a large pot and simmer for 20-30 minutes, until thickened and cooked.
- Prepare cans to be sealed. Transfer the cooked salsa into clean, sterile jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Use a funnel for this. Wipe rims of jars and, then place lids on top.
- Process with a water bath. Bring a large saucepan filled with water to a boil. Your saucepan needs to be tall enough to have the water cover the jars by 2 inches.