Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Gardening Carnival - Carrots

The Gardening Carnival is in it's second week.  I'm seeking information about organic gardening. I'm going to be trying Square Foot Gardening this year by using Companion Gardening as well. I want to avoid GM seeds and spraying chemicals. I hope that we can all help each other by sharing our research and knowledge about gardening so that it won't be so overwhelming for us first-timers and so that we can have success in this endeavor. Please share any knowledge you have in the comments, feel free to link to your blog if you have info there and to link back here. You can use this picture if you want, unfortunately I haven't been able to figure out how to imbed "Gardening Carnival" into the picture. If anyone knows, would you mind commenting below.

I wanted to focus on carrots for this week's Gardening Carnival. Carrots are the most eaten veggie in our family.  Simple to grab and snack on or add to a meal.
I'm going to format my notes in the following way to be able to go back for future referencing:

Seeds/SqFt - 16
Growing Season - Spring, Summer, Fall and sometimes Winter depending on area.
Indoor seed starting - No, doesn't transplant well.
Earliest Outdoor Planting - 3 weeks before last spring frost.
Location - Full sun but can stand partial shade.
- Tomatoes, leaf lettuce, chives, onions, leeks, radishes, rosemary, wormwood & sage.
- Carrot roots helps with the growth of peas and beans and possibly lettuce.
Non-Companions - Dill.  Store away from apples.
Sprouts - 2-3 weeks
- Plant 2-3 seeds in each 16 spaces in square.
- Water soil & cover square with plastic covered cage.
- Keep ground moist at all times until they're almost mature to grow rapidly & continuously then reduce water so carrots don't crack from overly rapid growth.
- Weed weekly.
- If doing long and thing ones, grow in a taller square foot box.
Weeks from seed to harvest - 10
- Pull those with largest tops
- Pick early when only 1/2 size at sweetest and most tender?
- Scrub with veggie brush but don't peel.  Most of the vitamins are in the peel or close to the surface.
- For a late winter harvest, mulch heavily to keep ground from freezing to protect fall planted carrots.
- Carrot rust fly - onions, leeks & herbs (rosemary, wormwood & sage) act as repellents.
- Rabbits, woodchucks, deer, voles.
Seed Storage - 3-4 years from packet

This is part of this week's Real Food Wednesday.

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