How To Grow Carrots: Tips for Planting 

If you want something fun to grow, consider growing carrots in your vegetable garden. Carrots are biennial vegetables but are usually harvested in their first year of growth, then overwintered and bloom in their second year. The carrot leaves are carefully chopped by the compound leaves of the fern. Carrot flowers have five petals and sepals in compound umbels. Most carrot roots are about 1 inch in diameter and between 1 inch and 12 inches long. In this article, you will learn how to grow carrots.

Different Varieties of Carrots

Here are a few different types of carrots you can grow in your vegetable garden:

Emperor: This is the type of carrot you usually see at the grocery store. These carrots are higher in sugar than other carrot varieties and similar to Danvers (more in a minute). Another way to make imperial carrots stand out? Their leaves grow fast compared to other types.

Nantes: Named after the best growing region in France, Nantes carrots are not tapered like imperialists. Instead, they are perfectly cylindrical from top to bottom. This crunchy carrot has a sweetness that’s usually low maintenance.

Chantenay: If the soil conditions in your garden are a little less than ideal, go for Chantenay carrot seeds. This variety grows well in rich soil to a length of 6 to 7 inches. Be sure to harvest these carrots on time; otherwise, they won’t be as tasty.

Danvers: Danvers carrots, grown in Danvers, Massachusetts, are long, thin, and grow well in a variety of soil conditions, such as clay. They are usually orange but don’t be surprised if you see them in other colors.

Mini Carrots: Although the baby carrots you see in the store are actually full-size shaved carrots, there are many varieties of mini carrots. Some are as small as turnips, but luckily they are sweeter! Because they’re so small, they’re also fine in containers, so plant some and add them to your patio garden.

Are Carrots Easy to Grow?

Even experienced gardeners can face the challenge of growing long, sweet carrots. Often, carrot roots are bland, misshapen, and sturdy, which is a disappointment. But given the soft soil, cool weather, and plenty of moisture, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t grow sweet and crunchy carrots.

How to Plant Carrots

When to Plant

Carrots grow well in cool weather. You can start growing carrot seedlings or sow carrot seeds as soon as the soil is cleared in spring, even two to three weeks before the last frost. You can plant carrots in a row every few weeks throughout the spring. In warm climates, you may grow carrots in the fall and throughout the winter.

How To Grow Carrots

How To Grow Carrots

Having a thriving vegetable garden is easier than you might think. All it needs is a little nurture and proper preparation to see it grow. Although carrots are a low-maintenance crop, it’s still important to ensure they have the right growing conditions for proper germination and more growth. Here are a few areas you want to focus on for the highest return on your efforts.

Manage Weeds and Pests

Getting rid of weeds in your garden is essential, but even more so when you’re learning how to grow carrots. You should avoid herbicides as they can damage your plants. Try mulching instead, but be sure to allow your plants to mature before spreading anything around, otherwise, germination will be hindered.

Pests are also a common problem. Leafhoppers, carrot weevil, nematodes, and carrot rust flies can all damage vegetables and spread disease. The good news is that there are many things you can do to lessen their impact on your garden.

Stay on top of weeding, rotate crops, and use traps when appropriate. Insecticidal soaps are a great option for managing pests without depositing more chemicals into the environment. Carrot flowers attract an array of beneficial insects such as ladybugs, whitefly destroyers, pirate bugs, and more.

Planting and Watering Tips

Carrots are a cool-climate crop, so you’ll want to start growing them in early spring, depending on where you live. A good rule of thumb is to plant carrots when the soil temperature is around 50 degrees F (they will sprout between 55 and 75 degrees F). You may be able to plant them in early fall, as long as there is no severe cold.

Because carrots have a fragile root system, you should skip transplanting entirely and start with carrot seeds. But here’s the thing: carrot seeds are difficult to handle and grow. Seed strips or pellets containing carrot seeds make the planting process easier.

Spacing is important to keep you from thinning out later, that is, pulling out excess seeds once they start growing. Plant the seeds two to four inches apart to give them plenty of room to grow.

Your carrots will thrive in the sun, so keep that in mind when you’re deciding where to plant your seeds. Some carrots are fine in containers and can be easily moved around if you need to.

Another option is to try a raised bed. Backroot fabric planter beds are great for growing carrots in vegetable gardens. Durable fabrics stand the test of multiple growing seasons, allowing plants to get more oxygen to their roots and improve drainage.

Keeping the soil moist is your best bet for happy carrots, as dry conditions can affect carrot shape, color, and flavor. Less than an inch of rainfall per week means you have to water regularly or set up an irrigation system to keep it well hydrated.

Protect your carrots from freezing temperatures with a row of lids. They help keep the soil warm where you need it and keep your plants from the cold. You can DIY your own luggage with plastic bags if necessary.

Pay Attention To Soil Quality

A thriving garden starts with a solid foundation, and good soil is essential. Start by testing your soil. The pH you want is just right – between 6 and 7 is fine.

Unlike some fruits and vegetables, carrots are forgiving and adapt well to different soils. However, they grow best in lighter sandy soils. Loose soils don’t face the same challenges as rocks and heavier clays. Poor drainage and soil compaction can damage carrot root systems.

Before you start planting, boost your garden soil with an organic potting mix. Regular gardening soils rely on just a few ingredients to nourish plants, such as vermiculite, peat moss, or composted bark, but these are not enough for a healthy garden.

Keep an eye out for nutrient-rich soils such as kelp meal, bat guano, coconut palm, beneficial bacteria, and more.

Harvest Carrots

Depending on the variety of carrots you grow, they will usually be ready for harvest in two to three months. You can sometimes see dirt sticking out of their brightly colored tops, another clue that they’re ready to pick.

If you have a root cellar, the root cellar is the best place to store harvested carrots, but your refrigerator will also work. Before storing carrots, cut off the carrot skins, but don’t throw them in the trash. Put them in your compost pile, or experiment in the kitchen. Carrot tops can be used to make a delicious pesto, as a salad topping, and as a stock dressing. Don’t forget that you can pickle vegetables and eat carrots too!

Carrot Care

Carrot Care

Temperature and Humidity

These biennials are commonly grown as annuals in all regions and in all climates. However, they grow best and taste best when the average nighttime temperature is around 55 degrees Fahrenheit and the average daytime temperature is 75 degrees Fahrenheit. In warm climates, carrots are sometimes grown as a late fall and winter crop.


Carrots need loose, well-drained soil. Rocks and clumps can cause carrot roots to split and deform. Carrots prefer slightly acidic soils between 6.0 and 6.8.


Although the roots grow underground, the leaves need full sun for partial shade so that carrot roots can grow quickly and form sugar.


Water carrots with at least an inch of water every week. Mulching will help conserve moisture and keep the soil cool.


If your soil isn’t high in organic matter, after two weeks of growing the carrot tops, you’ll need supplementation. Any good quality organic vegetable fertilizer will do. Because they grow for the roots, don’t overuse nitrogen fertilizers, as nitrogen fertilizers mostly help the leaves grow.

Final Words

Learning how to grow carrots in your garden is worth the hard work — they’re easy to grow, delicious to eat, and can be harvested in a few months or less. What’s more, if you’re a beginner, they’re the perfect way to enjoy low-maintenance gardening and gain confidence.