Carrots are a delicious vegetable rich in vitamin A and other essential nutrients. Organic carrots can be grown in your garden and are well suited for growing in containers as long as they are large enough. With a little know how they are easy to grow and a delicious fresh staple for your organic garden!
Growing Organic Carrots in Containers
Any container will work for growing carrots. Be sure the bottoms have drainage holes and you may want to add some pebbles or stones to help drain the water. Your containers should be 30cm deep for and 33cm wide so the carrots have the room to grow. It doesn’t matter what type of pot you use as long as it is large enough for the carrot roots. A good peat style soil is best which you can purchase at your local garden supply center. You should also add some fertilizer to the soil to help with the growing process.
Since carrots are a root vegetable, your option for growing them is to use seeds. Make small holes in the soil about inch down and drop the seed into the hole and fill each hole with soil. Water the pot but don’t drench it or the seeds may rise to the surface. After about one week you should see small plants beginning to appear above the soil surface.
You can thin out your pots once the plants reach about 1 inch tall. Your plants should be about to one inch apart so they have room to grow in your pots. As they continue to grow, give them some fertilizer about once per week. You can harvest your carrots when they are small and enjoy baby carrots or allow them to fully mature into full vegetable plants. You can continue to grow them from seed all summer long so you have a constant supply of vegetables to eat. Fill your used containers up with more fertilizer when replanting the carrots in the same container.
Dealing with Carrot Pests
Your carrots can be attacked by several different pests including root flies, flea beetles, worms, leafhoppers, and leaf miners. Try using pesticide-free deterrents like sticky traps or floating row covers if you are bothered by any of these bugs. Your garden center can help you if you are having serious pest problems. You can also put a full cover over your plants to protect them from infestations too.
If your organic carrots are having disease issues like late blight, you can simply remove the affected areas to halt the progress of the decay. When rust (reddish-yellow spots on plant) is a problem, it stems from poor air circulation. Remove the affected plants after harvest season and burn. When re-planting, be sure to space plants widely to improve conditions.
Enjoying Organic Carrots All Year Long
Once you get a crop going you may not be able to eat it all. You can freeze carrots to use in the winter months. Carrots should be cut into small chunks or strips and not freeze them whole, although smaller baby carrots can be frozen this way.. You can also blanch them for about five minutes before freezing them.
Don’t thaw out your carrots when you are ready to use them just transfer them directly to your cooking pots. Frozen carrots may not have quite as much flavor as fresh ones from the garden.
Carrots are a wonderful vegetable to grow in a container. Just use a large pot, good soil and some fertilizer. Enjoy your carrots fresh once they have grown or freeze them and enjoy fresh vegetables all year long.