Carrots - Autumn
Rotation Group: 2, Roots and Onions
AUTUMN KING 2Is the popular choice for many gardeners due to its reliability. This heavy cropper produces carrots packed full of delicious flavour, which hold well in the ground without splitting.
SENIORA very late, vigorous maincrop, but it will stay in good condition in the garden through until the following May. The long, cylindrical roots tolerate powdery mildew and alternaria.
RESISTAFLYMarked resistance to carrot fly is not the only reason to grow this Nantes-type. Its flavour is sweet, and the roots have little core. The perfect finger carrot for late autumn.
MARIONThis Nantes-type variety was given an Award of Garden Merit by the RHS in 2010. It's long, well coloured roots will stay in condition in the ground for several months and will over-winter successfully in some areas, providing tasty carrots for much of the year.
Site, Soil and Preparation
Carrots grow best in full sun and light, fertile, well-drained soil. If your soil is stony, shallow or heavy clay, you may end up with stunted or forked roots, so try short-rooted types.
Carrots are best sown outdoors in their final growing position.
The autumn crop outdoor sowing season is from June to early August. Sow the seeds as thinly as possible, 15mm (1/2in) deep, in rows 150-300mm (6-12in) apart. Seeds can be slow to germinate, so be patient.
Thin out the seedlings if necessary, aiming for plants 50-75mm (2-3in) apart.
Carrots are best sown outdoors in their final growing position and do not need transplanting.
Carrots are drought resistant so seldom need watering. However, in long dry spells they will benefit from a soaking. Fast-growing weeds can crowd out carrots, so hand weed regularly between rows. Be careful when weeding or thinning that you don't crush the foliage, as the smell attracts carrot fly.
Carrots are ready about 12-16 weeks after sowing. For the best flavour harvest carrots as soon as they are large enough to use.