Carrots are a crowd-favorite root crop for their sweet and nutritious element and easy greenhouse growing.
Start growing carrots in a greenhouse of your own!
Crops like carrots are resilient. They are perfect for both new greenhouse growers and those with more expertise since they are quick and easy to grow.
Pre-Planting Knowledge You Should Know
Choosing the correct seeds and preparing the soil are two critical steps in growing carrots in your greenhouse.
Ever tried to understand the origin of carrots? The heads will blossom and produce seeds the following year if you leave them in the soil. Additionally, heirloom and hybrid seeds are marketed. Open pollination occurs with heirloom seeds. Artificial cross-pollination between two or more distinct plant kinds results in hybrid seeds. They are the ones that are generally sold in your local garden center.
Create raised beds by breaking up the lumps and maintaining an average soil temperature for your carrot plant. As you proceed, remove large stones and keep the soil moist. It will be challenging for the seedlings to grow strong, deep roots in a heated greenhouse without proper soil preparation.
Keep your soil free of manure since it has too many nutrients. Carrots will be prompted to fork and put forth small side root growth as a result. One week before sowing, a small amount of general fertilizer is all that is needed.
There are over 40 species of carrots sold in the market. To know the basics, here are four main categories of the best and most common carrot varieties:
A Danvers type comes to mind when you think about a generic carrot. These medium-length carrots have the traditional rounded shoulders and pointy tips. They reach around 6-7 inches and can withstand deeper, heavier soils than Imperator varieties. Their outstanding taste, virtually coreless roots, rich orange color, and superior storage quality are well-known characteristics.
Imperator-type carrots are as striking in appearance and flavor as their names suggest. They are great for fresh eating and have long roots that may reach 10 inches. Long, slim Imperator carrots are used to make the majority of the delicious baby carrots you find in a grocery store bag.
More than any other carrot, Chantenay carrots have short, conical roots that can penetrate rocky and clay soils. They are thick at the shoulders and drop to a sharp tip, not developing long and thin. They have a deep flavor and store remarkably well, but they must be harvested as soon as they reach a certain size to avoid turning fibrous and woody.
Nantes carrots have a unique, elegant appearance. They are famous for being smooth and almost flawlessly cylindrical, with approximately the same diameter from end to end and a blunt tip. They have a delicate texture, a sweet flavor, and nearly no core, making them perfect for juicing and fresh eating. It can be planted together, matures quickly, and does not require deep soil, making it ideal for container gardening.
Carrots thrive in cold weather. This makes it a great plant to cultivate in your greenhouse in the spring, fall, and winter. You could decide against growing them in the summer depending on where you live, as it might be challenging to maintain cool temperatures.
Most carrots are sown outdoors between April and July. In an unheated greenhouse or beneath cloches, early cultivars can be planted as early as February. And when in doubt about when to sow carrot seeds of your choice, check the seed packet.
Carrots may be grown in a greenhouse all winter long for multiple harvests in spring. But generally speaking, they prefer to stay cold and tolerate frost than to struggle in greenhouses in the hotter summer months. A sunny location with partial shade, cool soil, and adequate drainage is ideal. Short-rooted types can still thrive in these environments, even though heavy, rocky soils or clay-based beds might make growth more challenging.
Growing Carrots In Greenhouse
1. Sowing The Seedlings
Before dispersing the seeds, rake the ground until it is crumbly fine. Considering how little the seeds are, it might be challenging to have them sown thinly. Smoothly cover and make the soil harder within the rows. A six-inch distance between each carrot is recommended. You may plant them on a raised bed inside or outside the greenhouse, into a bigger planter, or directly into the fertile soil.
2. Thinning The Plants
Carrot seeds germinate after two to three weeks. Remove the less resilient carrot seedlings. The leaves and stems should not be damaged in any way, and the rejected weaker plants must be burned or buried immediately after removal. Healthy growth can be achieved by spacing the remaining seedlings two to three inches apart.
3. Watering The Soil
Your greenhouse carrots prefer moist soil and not soggy soil. After you sow carrots, do not allow the ground to become dry, or the seeds may perish. Instead, consistent watering in the area for at least one inch every week is advised.
4. Keeping An Eye Out For Carrot Pests
Carrot flies are a common pest to carrots. Mature carrots draw it in carrot tops because of their tasty roots developing sweet scents. It is best to thin and harvest at night to make your carrots pest-free. Their number is also decreased by firming and regular watering. Your carrots will be vigorous and free of pests if you regularly water them and hoe the rows.
Wrapping the seedlings and the soil nearby with a fine mesh is also an option. This little fabric will lessen the possibility that the less than half-inch-long carrot fly will be able to deposit eggs in the soil surrounding your crop.
Your carrots will become tattered or of bad quality as a result of fly larvae feeding on them after hatching under the soil's surface. Mulch made of grass and leaves can deter flies from depositing their eggs in the ground by making it more difficult to do so.
5. Harvesting Greenhouse Carrots
Before harvesting, the soil must always be in proper soil conditions. Since you cannot see the carrots, you may be wondering how long they must grow. When the withering of the leaves becomes visible, you may begin harvesting your own carrots seven to 10 weeks after seeding. After harvesting, flatten and hydrate the soil.
Carrots may be kept for up to 21 days or around two months, and both fresh and cooked versions are edible.