Organic Carrot: Autumn King 2. Daucus carota subsp. sativus.
Carrots are a wonderful vegetable to grow. We grow this variety as our staple, as it’s hardy, straightforward, high-yielding and stores well.
How to grow:
Sow successionally, you can start some under protection in March, starting sowings outside from May. Your seed bed needs to have a fine tilth, the seedlings won’t do well pushing past even little stones. Sow thinly and shallowly, 0.5cms into light loamy soil, free of stones and not recently manured.
Weed well, especially in the beginning as carrots grow poorly in competition with weeds. Keeping your veg beds weed free also helps keep pests away, like slugs.
Carrot root fly: Flies twice a year, early May and September. If you’re successionally planting you can still avoid the root fly. Smell seems to play a part in them finding your carrots. We plant our onions and leeks beside our carrots and this seems to help, also the adults fly about 90cms above the ground, put up netting like the green windbreak around the crop helps keep them off.
Favourite ways to eat them:
The roots are full of flavour, vitamins and minerals. The leaves are also great in salads and stews.
The crop wild relative of this plant is native to Ireland, Daucus carota. It’s woody tap root won’t be tasty at all, it’s taken plant breeders over 1,000’s of years to bring us the carrots we have today.
Seed weight: Approx 800 – 1,000 seeds per gram.