Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
What is the secret to getting carrots to germinate?
Rate This FAQ
Q. What is the secret to getting carrots to germinate? It seems that in keeping them wet, I wash away the thin layer of soil over them, no matter how fine the spray. Also, can they be grown in a wide row?
A. Yes, carrot stand establishment can be a problem and getting adequate plant stands is difficult. The difficulty is that carrots are slow to germinate and often take from 10-14 days to get the seed root to show. It then takes another week to get the seed leaves to emerge. This slow germination requires different planting methods to ensure that stands of adequate number are achieved. If the seed is not stored properly, germination is reduced. Start with good seed, a well prepared seedbed and try not to seed too heavily.
Your approach of trying to keep the seeds moist means lots of time and effort spent in the garden. Here is a better approach:
* Prepare your planting area by sowing your seeds on the surface of the soil. Moisten the area and then cover the soil surface with burlap bags, an old piece of carpet, old pieces of board or plywood or any other material. You want to have a moist soil surface that doesn't dry out.
* After a few days, periodically check to see if the seed is germinating. Once you see the seed leaves you can remove the covers. However, don't take the covers off completely but use them to shield the plants from the sun for a few days. Seedlings grown this way are more tender and need to be hardened off a little.
* You can use these methods on rows or wide beds. I grow my carrots on beds because they take up less space and are easier to care for throughout the season. Once up and established, you can thin them out a bit.
* As you get used to this method, you will have to refine your seeding practice since most gardeners over-seed carrots just to get a few to emerge.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- When do I pick my watermelon?
- I am wrapping up my garden for the year. I have been looking at adding horse manure to my garden soil to boost the organic matter in it. This year I added NutriMulch (turkey manure blend) and that worked out well, but was expensive. I'm concerned about the soil quality. I notice that it's pretty hard when in big dry clods. Would I be hurting my garden to add green horse manure now, and tilling it in? I've read a little about deficiencies in the soil because of too much horse manure, so if it's safe or even a good idea to add to a garden, how much is the right amount?
- I have had some raspberry plants in an area near my house (6' x 12') for over ten years and only in the spring do I try to gently loosen the soil with a gardening fork. I have not added anything other than some fruit oriented fertilizer or Miracle Grow in that time. Half of the section usually produces berries the size of the tip of your little finger and some grow as big as the tip of your thumb. The others are small and crumbly,which is okey of jam but not for visuals or overall production. I read that crumbliness is due to ovary infertility. How do I overcome that? Should I also be doing some thinning? Early this last spring I cut the canes to about three feet high but many of them are now close to eight feet long. What is the best way to deal with excess growth?
- I wanted to mail order some flowers to plant. Is the end of October too late to plant flowers?
- I have a poinsettia that is about three years old. The first year it bloomed beautifully, then last year and now this year, just before the holidays, the leaves wither and fall off. I have not changed anything carewise. It is in an ideal place, gets plenty of dark hours, no drafts, filtered sun, and just enough water. Why is it doing this?
- I planted 2 plum trees several years ago. The 3rd year I had a huge crop. The next 2 years the leaves had what I think is peach leaf curl or at least that's how it made the leaves look. I sprayed both years with no improvement. This year I've also sprayed but after blossoming, the leafing is very sickly, the leaves done even really form, they just make tiny clusters of pale spikes that look like tiny curled leaves. Is there anything I can so short of digging them out? Can they be saved or I am better off just starting from scratch? How to I make sure what is there doesn't contaminate the new trees? Thanks.
- How do I go about planting yams? We have already started the roots forming in a jar of water but need to know how to plant them. Thanks for your response. Duane
- When can I plant peas? Should the peas be soaked before planting them?