Carrots are actually tap-root which have enlarged. They have a very wide and deep root system. It is a cool climate crop and needs to be sown in the winter, especially in the sub-tropical areas. The optimum s is 60 to 70 deg F. Though we are used to experiencing carrots as orange in color, there are other varieties which can be white, crimson or even purple in color. But rather than focusing on color your main concern should be on the root size to suit your soil.
Try to find the uniform blend of soil, it should be without any lumps and stones. These can cause the roots to fork. The depth of the soil should be at least twice that of the mature size of the carrot. The pH of the soil ideally is between 5.5 to 7.0. Put a sufficient amount of compostor rotting organic matter. They require nutrient enriched soil. Adding of nitrogen can be very crucial to the growth and aesthetics of your carrots. Organic sources such as blood, alfalfa meal, hornmeal, etc., can be used. Also, think about using companion planting and crop rotation techniques. Growing carrots after legumes can eliminate the need of adding extra nitrogen. Avoid hot nitrogen sources like fresh manure and fish fertilizer. They can cause roots to fork.
Carrots also do well with most plants. Rosemary and sage can deter carrot flies. Check companion planting for more details. If you are planning to grow the carrots till it gives you seed, it is necessary that you avoid planting Dill, Coriander or other plants of the Umbelliferae family. These plants cause cross-pollination and thus chances of getting the seeds are greatly reduced. Though if you have only planted for the roots and not concerned about getting the seeds, this might not much of an importance to you.
Good news for the urban gardeners, you can grow carrots in the containers also. Just choose the pot which is at least 12 inches deep (container should be twice as deep as the size of the mature carrot) and with good drainage facility. In this case, try to plant the seeds 1 to 3 inches apart. Cover the seeds with soil and water often. It is always better to try for the smaller varieties.
It generally takes 12 to 15 days to germinate. Once they have emerged cover them with a fine mesh netting. It will help to get air, water, and sunlight, but keeps pest at bay. Applying mulch can keep the moisture level and also reduce the weed problem. The growth of the carrot seedling is always slower than the weeds. Nematodes can be prevented from harming the plant by applying plenty of compost. These are rich in predatory microorganisms and can prey on nematodes.
Carrots can be harvested in less than three months for most of the varieties. You can judge the size of the carrot by looking at the top. Usually, the largest carrots have the darkest and greenest top. Most are at their prime when about 2.5 cm in diameter at the crown. It is crucial that you don’t leave your carrots for too long in the ground. It can make them too long, tough and sometimes distasteful. Do some watering before harvesting. It will soften the soil and will be easier to take out the carrot.
Will be shipped from a greenhouse and florist called "Flower Shop Inc". Situated in Manhasset, New York. In business for 17 years and counting.