Carrots may all be bright orange/red in colour, but with the advent of so many modern varieties one may now grow any number of different shapes. Breeding efforts over recent years have been directed towards removing the woody yellow cores from carrots, which explains the terms ‘red-cored’ and ‘red-cored improved’ attached to varietal names.
Golfball round, good on heavy clay land, or finger-long. They are quick-maturing.
Cyridrical with a blunt end. Has little core and is excellent for freezing.
Early, tender and good for freezing.
‘Early French Frame’
A round carrot, up to 5 cm (2 inch) across in diameter.
These medium-sized carrots are the best all-rounders. The youngare pulled for intermediate use and the remainder left to mature as main crop for winter storage.
‘Chantenay Red-cored ‘
Thick and stump-rooted, deep orange flesh. A popular carrot variety.
Extremely hardy; will stay in the soil over winter. Carrot fly finds it less attractive than other varieties.
The 15 cm (6 inch) roots are uniformly cylindrical and core-free.
These are usually grown for showing in specially-prepared soil.
One of the longest carrots.
Good storing qualities.
Long, uniform and finely-tapered
To ensure unrestricteddevelopment a sandy loam is ideal. Heavy soil will cause ‘fanging’ (splitting) of roots. Apply Growmore at a rate of 100 g/sq.m (3oz/sq.yd).
For early pulling,broadcast in frames or tunnels in January/February. Sow outdoors in March. Main crops are sown from April-June in rows 15 cm (6 inch) apart in shallow drills 12 – 25 mm (½ – 1 inch) deep.
Hoe between rows to remove weeds; avoid damaging the carrots. Thinwhen the first rough appear. Thin again, twice, until the final distance between plants is 5 cm (2 inch) for round varieties, 10 cm (4 inch) for intermediate and long varieties. To minimise the risk of attack from carrot root fly, thin only on dull days. Firm and water the rows thoroughly after thinning.
PESTS AND DISEASES
Carrot root fly The cream/white larvaeon the roots in early summer, causing reddening of the foliage and some stunting of growth.
Delayuntil late May or June. Sowing thinly will reduce the need to thin later. (Thinning attracts the flies to the smell of the carrots.) Application of bromophos or diazinon granules to the drill may give some control. Floating film mechanically excludes the adult carrot flies and stop their egg-laying.
Willow carrotCrop attacked by . Spray with an approved .
Violet root rot Crop shows no sign of attack until October/November. The tips of the foliage turn yellow, and wilting may occur. Eventually thedie. When the roots are lifted, a felt-like mass of violet or purple fungal growth can be seen. No chemical treatments are effective. Maintain adequate fertiliser levels and ensure the site is well drained.
Harvesting and Storage
Pull the early sowings as required as soon as they are large enough for eating. The roots for storage should be lifted in October with a fork. Be careful not to bruise the roots, and reject diseased and pest-infested roots. Store in boxes of either sand or soil in a frost-proof shed. Alternatively, they can be stored in a clamp.