Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Gardening: The Carrot Chronicles

More like the carrot experiment but that just doesn't sound quite so good.

So it hovering in the mid 30's around here and raining, which makes for an uncomfortable cold, but according to my research carrots are to be put out 2-4 weeks before last frost and around here that's like right now! Being cool weather crops we have a short window in the spring to get carrots grown to harvest size before they bolt in the heat, so we can't be messing around!

I have a bunch of water jugs all stacked up in the barn. (And sitting in the way of course. I just had to pick them all back up and restack them yesterday and that's the second time I've knocked them down!) I started stacking them because the way these particular jugs are designed, with the bottom deeply indented to match the top, they stack pretty nicely and I figured I'd find some use for them along the way. So I think maybe I have; at least for some of them.

There's only the two of us and carrots are not our favorite vegetable so I figured a jug of carrots every two weeks or so might just be the ticket. We happened to have two different varieties, Danvers and Little Finger, so today I cut the top off two of the jugs, braved the rain and cold to run out to the trash-can full of potting mix to fill them up, then sifted in some carrot seeds and brushed the mix around to cover them.

Rather than drilling drainage holes in the bottom of the jugs I drilled a series of holes around them about an inch and a quarter up from the bottom. I'm going to see if the little reservoir this creates down there eases the watering issue. If not, if they stay too wet, then it's easy to fix by drilling some holes in the bottom of the jugs.

So now the seeds have gone from the freezer where we store them to sitting outside in the cold rain and 36 degree temperature. . . Not sure they'll appreciate that!

If these seem to be doing alright and it looks like we can fit a half dozen or so per jug, I'll do another set in two weeks.

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