Growing carrots from seed is quite easy, so why not try growing your own at home? They may be cheap to buy at the grocery store, but they will never taste as great as homegrown carrots.
Most carrots mature in 60-70 days. You can leave the carrots in the ground beyond the maturity date. This way you can harvest them as needed.
Although most carrots require loose, deep soils to thrive. If you have heavy, clay, or even shallow soils, there are varieties, such as Royal Chantenay, that can tolerate it.
For more detailed growing information, please check out this page: How to grow carrots.
How to Store Carrots
Storing carrots is easy, and they can last a long time in storage.
- The first step is to remove the greens as they will draw moisture out of the carrots.
- Do not wash the carrots until you are ready to use them.
- Seal carrots in a airtight bag. Keep them in a cool, dry and dark location.
- Do not store in close proximity to other fruit and potatoes.
Interestingly, over the course of 5 months the levels of vitamin A can actually increase in carrots that are properly kept in storage. Although the overall nutritional value of carrots will start to slowly decline past 3 months of storage.
Recommended Carrot Varieties
When purchasing carrots, I recommend you buy organic seeds. Most organic carrot seeds are old heirloom varieties. Heirloom varieties come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and flavours. Although the common colour for carrots is orange, they also naturally come in colours such as white, red, purple, and yellow.
Here are a few open-pollinated, heirloom carrot varieties:
- Royal Chantenay Carrots: Sweet tasting carrot that grows from 12-16 cm long. It tolerates heavy clay soils. Matures within 70 days.
- Nantes Carrots: Brilliant orange, coreless, sweet and crisp carrots. Mature in 70 days.
- Rainbow Carrots: Rainbow carrots are simply a blend of different natural varieties. The mixture is of white, red, purple, yellow and orange carrots.
For Canadian customers, you can purchase organic, heirloom carrot seeds here.
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