Garden-grown carrots are full of flavor and texture. However, gardeners often complain that their carrots don’t grow straight. We’ll tell you how to properly plant and grow carrots.
Carrots are long-lasting root vegetables that can be grown in many climates. They prefer to be grown during the cooler ends of the growing season—spring and fall.
Carrots’ root is rich in sugar, and a great source of vitamins and carotene. Not all carrots are orange; varieties vary in color from purple to white!
Common Carrot Problems and Answers
Some readers tell us they’ve stopped growing carrots because the plant didn’t grow straight. Don’t give up hope! It might just be your soil. Here’s what to try next season:
Do your carrots look round, short, fat, and/or more like a potato?
- Carrots need loose, light, airy soil. Most of us need to add sand. We use 100% sand mixed with ⅓ peat moss.
- Till deeper! Carrots usually give up if they grow down a foot and hit any soil clumps. While we’re not normally big fans of tilling, you must prepare a carrot bed. Till down 18 inches and make sure there are no rocks, weeds, or even soil clumps to impede your carrots’ growth.
Do your carrots look as if they have legs or do they split?
- Do not amend the soil with nitrogen-rich material. You have too much heavy compost or manure and too many nutrients, and perhaps not enough sand.
- Seed directly in the ground. Don’t transplant. Try to distribute seed in an even fashion so seeds don’t grow together or use a seed-sower or thin vigorously to the right space.
- Main soil moisture with frequent shallow waterings during germination. The soil can’t crust over.
Finally: Don’t expect the perfect shape of grocery store carrots. Your carrots will still taste better, whatever their shape!
See more about planting and soil preparation below.