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carrotsCarrots are roots – sweet, earth-flavored orange roots. Rich in carotene, high in fiber and sugar, you can eat them raw or cooked.  Raw carrots should be washed thoroughly.

Carotene, the source of the carrots orange color, is typically turned into Vitamin A in humans. If you eat too many carrots – way, way too many carrots – your skin can turn orange. On the other hand, lack of Vitamin A will cause vision problems.

Carrot seeds are best planted in early spring and left till late fall, specifically February, March, April, and August and September.

Under proper conditions, carrots can be stored 4 to 6 months. Cut off the tops one inch above the root and place in storage at 32 degrees F with high humidity. Carrots can also be buried in lightly moist sand or kept in an underground cellar.

Nutritional facts

Carrots are rich in antioxidants compounds and incredibly high in Vitamin A, which helps protect against cardiovascular disease and cancer.  Carrots contain the compound beta-carotene, which helps to prevent the degeneration of the eyes and senile cataracts.

Recipes

Planting

Carrots are sensitive to the pH level and grow best at around 6- 6.5 pH.  They also grow best in loose rich moist soil where they can grow a healthy root.  Loosen up the soil with a tiller or plow or hoe 8 to 9 inches deep so the carrot roots can fully develop. Break up clumbs of hard soil and remove rocks that could block the carrots’ growth.

Plant seeds a quarter to a half inch deep. Space rows a foot to 18 inches apart. Thin the seedlings after three weeks or so, so that the carrots you leave in the soil will be able to grow up big and yummy.

Be sure to weed. To have a constant supply of carrots, plant your rows weeks apart so they mature at separate times.