carrots

I am Curious Yellow, Red, Orange, Purple and White

colorful carrots

variety is the carrot of life

It was a few years back Mandolin and I were checking out a new restaurant in town.
Hey, once you’ve been in the business..what can say?

So the veggie du jour was carrots- yellow and orange mixed carrots.

Really? They come in different colors?

Of course I planted yellow carrots for the first time the following spring.
They tasted pretty much the same, but they looked so lovely to eat.

Not long after, it happened.
I found out there are even more.

colorful carrots

the colors of life

This year I planted 6 different varieties:

1. Creme De Lite – crisp and sweet
2. Amarillo – a wonderful yellow carrot
3. Danvers half-long – orange, shorter and good for rocky soil (my standard)
4. Atomic Red – better cooked than raw, strong flavor
5. Yellowstone – better cooked to bring out the flavor
6. Purple Haze – color dissipates when cooked -bummer

I also planted “Kaleidoscope” carrots- a mix of colors.

It’s a little early yet, but I couldn’t wait any longer-
I pulled 4 of the 6. Wow!

I plant different varieties of all my veggies in alphabetical order, it’s easier for me to remember that way.
I blame it on getting older, but it works.

So I know I’m missing the Purple Haze and the Yellowstone carrots plus I’m waiting on the mix- these are all growing on the far end of the bed, which is currently over-run by cucumbers.

If you are my age- ‘Purple Haze’ is a variety of carrot? Hmm…what would Jimi have thought of that?

colorful carrots

looks like breakfast to me

Anyway, here’s the good news- in this area, I can still squeeze in some more carrots.

So I think I want more of each color for freezing, and especially more of the orange- it’s my understanding they might hold up better in our cold storage closet.

Hmm…perhaps I’ll need to experiment with this to see if it’s true…
after all …I am still curious.

our cold storage closet
the title reference I never watched it, I swear :-)
how to grow carrots
What to plant when- in your area

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Categories: carrots, How to Grow

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How To Grow – Carrots

SaveTheWorld Jones suggested I be more specific on how to grow vegetables, so beginners like her will have the information they need to get started.

She’s full of great ideas.

I’m going to do some How-To posting on a veg-by-veg basis, starting with carrots.

Carrots are a root vegetable which simply means that the part you eat is the root.
They need enough room and a soil that isn’t hard packed to grow.
Here in Pennsylvania our soil is full of rocks and stones.
We grow carrots in a “raised” bed, specifically, we add soil to the bed to bring the level up about 10 inches.

Carrot seeds are tiny and difficult to space.
You can ‘thin’ the tiny sprouts to about 2 inches apart to give the remaining plants more room, buy pelleted seeds, or make seed tapes.
Plant from early in the spring to mid-summer for a continuous crop.

carrot sprout

carrot sprouting

What’s interesting about carrots is that they can be harvested right up until the ground freezes.

I remember the day, about 12 years ago, I found that out.
It was garden-life changing for me.
Someone on the internet posted they had just picked carrots, in January.
I asked them where they lived that they could be picking carrots. They replied “Maine”.

Thus a whole new world of extended season gardening opened up for me, and I’m still learning.
You can add to the time you can harvest carrots even more by covering the soil (not the plant tops) with straw or other mulch, this helps keep the soil a little warmer.

Carrots are ready to eat when they have a good color.
You’ll see the tops peeking out which also gives you a hint as to how big they are.
There is some debate about eating the greens; I never had the desire to.
If carrots are left in the ground too long, they can split.

yellow carrots

These yellow carrots are ready.

Carrots can be dehydrated, pressure canned, held in the fridge or root cellar and frozen.
There are numerous colors to choose from; white, yellow, red, orange and purples.
We grow as many colors as we can.

yellow and orange carrots

crispy colorful carrots

You can also grow carrots in containers; a rectangular pot at least 12 inches high will do, preferably about 5 gallon capacity.
Plant shorter varieties like the Danvers half-long or Nelson.

Botanical name: Daucus carota
Yield: 1 per seed
Spacing: 2″
Days to maturity: 35-75 days after seedlings sprout
Harvest: When they have a good color, and as needed.
Storage: Root cellar, dehydrate, can or freeze.

Categories: carrots, How to Grow

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