Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Serial carrot failure!!  (Read 6282 times)


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Lincolnshire
Serial carrot failure!!
« on: January 28, 2009, 11:03:41 am »
Now that we are not too far off Spring I am thinking about what to sow in the veg plot. I have tried to grow carrots pretty much every year, and every year they have failed. Sometimes I get one or two and that's about it. Sometimes a get few with a bit of top, but once I dig them up there is nothing there! Often, just nothing happens at all. I have experimented with different varieties, but still no luck. I live in the Lincolnshire fens so I would have thought that the soil would be ideal. Any suggestions anyone? Or should I just abandon them and concentrate on the stuff I know I can grow?


  • Joined Feb 2008
  • East Devon
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2009, 05:05:58 pm »
never give up :carrot: - we had the same problem with onions so ended up growing them in troughs instead and they did really well - adapt , adapt and adapt again!!!
relax and enjoy life - let others do the worrying


  • Joined Dec 2008
  • Perth
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2009, 05:10:23 pm »
Is your soil free draining? And have you ever tested the PH? Do you have problems growing other veggies? or just carrotts?

Carrotts aren't easy to grow compared with other throw and grow veggie seeds, but what i have found is they like soil that has well rotted manure.... they also like very soft fine soil, and well drained and they grow long and straight in soft deep furrows...... so like i said, lots of room for error!

I find the easiest way to guarantee a perfect carrott is to find some plastic pipe... preferably 6" diametre.... cut it onto 12" lengths and stand the tubes up in a corner of your veggie patch. Fill them with nice rotted compost and then plant a few dozen seeds in each section of pipe.... several months later, dig up superb straight, no fuss carrotts....yum yum!!  :farmer:


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Lincolnshire
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2009, 10:39:14 pm »
Our soil is free draining. I haven't tested the PH. Pretty much everything else grows really, although parsnips can be a bit hit and miss. I like the plastic pipes idea so I might give that a go. Thanks for the tip!


  • Joined Dec 2008
  • Perth
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2009, 11:34:44 pm »
honestly...plastic pipes and either compost from a bag or home made.... as long as it's fine and soft you can't go wrong....big long straight carrotts....... yum yum...... and you can even paint the pipes so they blend in!!  :farmer:

John.  ;)


  • Joined Jan 2009
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2009, 11:51:44 pm »
We're on heavy clay here yet the carrots do well. 2 things can affect them though.
- In the spring slug babies- almost too small to see. one day you might have a row of tiny carrot tops pushing through and the next they are all gone. I don't like pestcides but we've found the only way to deal with this is sparing use of slug pellets as the slug eggs are?overwintered in the soil and I'm not sure how large slugs have to get before nematode control works.
- carrot root fly- best way to avoid this is using fly resistant strains but we just alternate rows of carrots with onions or leeks and have never had a problem.
Hope this helps


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2009, 11:24:44 am »
We had very stoney heavy soil and were more successful with carrots after removing the stones and adding some sand and lots of our own compost.


  • Joined Sep 2008
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2009, 03:29:38 pm »
NEVER add manure for a root crop - you will get forked roots. Make sure your carrot soil is sandy and fertile. Make sure you have no slugs and snails as the seeds are so small they are easily eaten after germination by even one hungry snali  :'(
Ants will carry carrot seeds away so getrid of them too. Protect from root fly and keep well woatered or they will split.
In fact, they are so cheap at ASDA...


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2009, 03:44:37 pm »
They never taste the same from the shops, though...
If you grow a row of onions either side keeps root flies away (worked for me). Nina already mentioned that.


  • Guest
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2009, 03:51:39 pm »
yes ... carrots are very cheap, as are most veg really. However it is what they have had sprayed on them that is my main worry. Some of the chemicals that they spray on carrots are really scary , and as carrots are by  definition a root veg,they store everything that they can soak up . That includes all the chemicals. Thats why all the carrots you see in a store are perfect,compared to ones grown in your garden plot , that will have all sorts of imperfections and animal marks etc. I think I read that carrots should be peeled very thickly to avoid any chemical getting eaten ....well I would much rather grow my own and KNOW that there is nothing on or in my carrots , apart from the odd creepy crawly here and there. If I run out of home grown veg , I will buy stuff from the shops . Sadly I find it a bit too dear to always buy organic (theres that word again ), so I try as much as possible to grow enough to keep me going , any surplus going to family and then animal feed. I try as much as possible to grow stuff that can be left in situ , and taken as and when needed for food . That way it saves on storage problems . So apart from veg that is stored , I eat veg that is picked less than an hour ago. So therefore very fresh and grown without a trace of deadly chemicals (apart from any that fall from the sky !!!!).




  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Muiravonside, near Linlithgow
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2009, 07:57:26 pm »
i'm trying some carrots in containers today

i've got 9" deep pots and i've thinly sown them in a circlular shape. starting them off indoors on the window sill and once they start to come through and look healthy i'll move them outside to the tunnel

gonna sow some in the raised beds in mid-late march - gonna do rows at 4 week intervals  and the last lot will hopefully go into clamps and store for winter.

gonna try a late sowing in containers around september as well and move them indoors when it gets cold

i managed a great crop of carrots last year, my 1st attempt, just sowing the seed into a raised bed around may time


  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Leafy Surrey
Re: Serial carrot failure!!
« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2009, 01:19:45 pm »
My lack of carrots was completely cured by growing them in tubs a couple of years ago.  Just filled 12-15" deep with bagged compost and sowed and forgot them.  Harvested as and when I needed them - no bother, and absolutely gorgeous taste.  Previously tried everything but, with no success whatsoever. Weird but it works.  Also read that carrot seed doesn't keep more than a season, so make sure you sow all the packet(s).  My favourite was a French yellow carrot from www.realseeds  (I'd like to give them a plug on here, as I think they are brilliant!)


Onion failure

Started by Wannabeesmallholder (8.42)

Replies: 11
Views: 1346
Last post April 28, 2022, 09:51:01 pm
by Wannabeesmallholder
Early potato failure.

Started by BML (8.33)

Replies: 17
Views: 6975
Last post June 01, 2011, 11:07:24 am
by Fleecewife
Carrot help!

Started by Loqueris (8.06)

Replies: 4
Views: 5182
Last post May 22, 2008, 08:55:17 pm
by Fluffywelshsheep
carrot help!

Started by stephen (8.06)

Replies: 3
Views: 1771
Last post August 14, 2010, 11:52:49 am
by hexhammeasure
How to avoid carrot fly.

Started by BML (7.97)

Replies: 7
Views: 7990
Last post May 07, 2012, 01:22:06 pm
by deepinthewoods

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Ark Farm Livestock Movement Service

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2022. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS