Down on the Allotment

What's happening down on the allotment? An intimate account of a passionate veggie grower.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Matron Can't Grow Carrots!

I live in hope... that one day when I pull at that perfectly round top, that there will be a perfectly straight carrot under the soil!Here in London the soil is typically London clay. Great for some veggies, but generally not so good for root veggies. I do add extra sand to the soil when I am trying to grow carrots, but perhaps I need more?
Of course these would be rejected by a commercial supermarket, but that is their loss. I cleaned and grated these carrots within 10 minutes of picking. The scent and flavour of fresh picked carrots is amazing. Grated carrot in a plain balsamic vinegar dressing. Who could ask for more. Wonderful!

18 Comments:

At 6:45 PM, Blogger Dan said...

Carrots with character! It all comes done to taste in the home garden, use gardeners are not vain people :-) If you do want your straight carrots a 12" raised bed would do the trick, filled with light compost, sand & loam.

 
At 6:50 PM, Blogger Jo said...

It doesn't matter what they look like, they still taste better than those bought from the supermarket. I didn't do very well with carrots last year, they just didn't want to grow for me.

 
At 7:15 PM, Blogger Ribbit said...

Dan's right. They've got class! I was also going to say, like Dan did, that maybe you could try your carrots in a container of a sort. Hey, It would free up garden space for other things.....

 
At 7:19 PM, Blogger Garden Pheenix said...

Gorgeous :c) Besides, way more to them then skinny little supermarket carrots ^_^

 
At 8:13 PM, Blogger Toni said...

What fun carrots!!!

What about building a raised bed and using the Square Foot Gardening method for your carrots?

Just read Dan's comment... yup... that's what I'd do...

http://mysquarefootgardenadventure.blogspot.com/2009/11/last-of-my-yummy-garden-carrots.html

Toni in Wy

 
At 8:19 PM, Blogger Carrie said...

They taste great no matter their shape. However if you want straighter carrots you could do what we did and plant them in a separate deep container with loamy soil; they're straight and the carrot fly can't get up high, ahha. On the other hand you could try globe carrots maybe they'll work better or yet again be happy with what you've got - they look great.

 
At 9:03 PM, Blogger Bob said...

Hi Matron, I struggle with carrots. Don't you find them very sneaky veg the way they show such lovely tops peeping out of the ground only to be ugly brutes one inch below the surface? Bob.

 
At 9:15 PM, Blogger Di said...

I'm sure they taste great. One of our favorite carrots is Nantes, you might try.

 
At 10:35 PM, Blogger Tash said...

I agree it's taste, not shape that's important.

Also you grow everything else (and some) so well.

Pineapples, tomatillos...

Carrots is about the only thing I can grow but I'm on sand here in Weybridge.

best wishes Tash

 
At 11:43 PM, Blogger miss m said...

Ha! They've become your trademark, Matron ! They certainly are wonky but look perfectly scrumptious just the same. :)

Of course, should we be neighbours, I'd be happy to help you double dig and lighten that soil even more. ;)

 
At 5:26 AM, Anonymous kitsapFG said...

It gives me comfort to know that the mighty gardener Matron has at least one veggie that does not behave perfectly for her! ;) LOL!

It's the eating that counts and it sounds like they tasted marvelous.

 
At 11:28 AM, Blogger Vegetable Heaven said...

Carrots are the bane of my life too. When my grand-daughter was tiny I grew some in pots of compost, just so she could pull a few to eat. Pots and raised beds are a solution but somehow, you feel offended that they won't grow nicely for you in the ground, don't you? Our old allotment, where we lived before we came here, grew lovely root veg, but the garden and the new plot sadly don't!

 
At 6:44 PM, Anonymous Marian(LondonUK) said...

We are on London Clay too, on our allotments in East London it is a bit hit and miss, some get great carrots others comedy carrots. I have grown Parmex which is a stubby round one o.k. not much carrot in size but a mouthful of flavour.
Love the entertainment mis-shaped veggies bring!.
Marian (LondonUK)

 
At 11:40 PM, Anonymous Molly Trolley said...

I've read that too much fertilizer will cause carrots to fork. Which doesn't explain why I can have perfectly straight carrots and 3-legged ones growing side by side in the same bed.

 
At 7:25 AM, Blogger Matron said...

Apparently stones in the soil cause carrots to fork. When the seed germinates and the root goes down, wherever it hits a stone it forks. The answer appears to be to sieve the stones out of the soil. Will add more sand and try sieving.

 
At 12:03 PM, Blogger Lottie said...

They are fantastic - I live in Norfolk and the soil is full of flints - and my carrots are comical too!

 
At 7:45 PM, Blogger Yolanda Elizabet Heuzen said...

I have not been all that successful with carrots either but, like you, I garden on heavy clay. Was weeding my potager beds last week when the sun was out and about 8C and to my surprise I not only pulled weeds but some carrots too. They were very tasty and had survived the long frost period without any problems. I had sown those short round carrots earlier last year but had not noticed any coming up. Till last week.

How is Buddy doing? I hope he's fine. Give him a little kiss on his nosywosy from Tara and me.

 
At 11:20 AM, Blogger ReapWhatYouGrow said...

Hi Matron, all our carrots are exactly like this, and taste no worse for it! Despite the mutant look of them, they are still possibly my favourite crop from the allotment. As you say the flavour is just so intense.
x

 

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