Best time to sow carrot seed?

Cascade, VA(Zone 7a)

I remember last year growing carrot from seed in an old metal wash tub rigged onto a stand. They grew great, except for one minor detail, i didnt know they were a cool weather veggie, and i picked them around mid july and of course the taste was very bitter--like they had been soaked with kerosene.

A friend told me to start the seed a few weeks before the last frost date (which for me, the Daves garden site's frost guide says is April 29), so i am thinking of starting the seeds in mid april, like around the 15th. Any further advice would be greatly appreciated :)

Augusta, GA(Zone 8a)

In Pittsylvania county, I would direct sow carrots between March 15 and April 15. Frost does not bother them, but they are slower to emerge in colder soil. Those were my planting dates in Pulaski county so you could push for a bit earlier.

Enterprise, AL(Zone 8b)

Might want to try this site. That zone =10, will actually bring up zone 7a in the USA, and it shows to plant carrots in the month of March. You can set this site to e-mail you the suggested planting times (I get them twice a month). Free, no charge. You can also select whichever zone you want suggestions for.

Enterprise, AL(Zone 8b)

Just looked at the harvest date for carrots suggested, Mid July! guess that makes sense when you consider the time it takes them to grow, but you could pull some early ones.

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

This year I had finally the best carrots ever !!
Here in my zone 8a I direct seed them at the end of August (even during the 100F days the little seeds slowly germinated and kept growing).
I started to harvest carrots in February.
It is a long time to wait ... but I did plant my carrots on the edges of the vegetable beds so they did not take room away from other crops.
I am eating "Lunar White", the white carrots offered by Baker Creek Seeds. Yummy !
My DH says that he doesn't like carrots ... well he love those white ones because he thinks they are radishes ... giggle ... I will tell him the truth ... eventually !

Cascade, VA(Zone 7a)

This time around i have a "rainbow mix" variety package, which includes purple, red, orange, yellow, and white.

Also i believe another contributor to the last batch turning so bitter was that i put the washtub i was growing them in somewhere that gets too hot during the day for them. I had it on the south side of my home where it gets sun from nearly sun up to sun down.

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

I have a friend here who sows carrot seeds in March. She had the biggest carrots I've seen in a long time in a home garden!

I plan on sowing more seeds this month, too!

P.S. My last efforts came out tasting like kerosene. Thought I was the only one who could describe that "flavor"! Glad to know someone else has experienced it.

Plantersville, TX(Zone 9a)

Since carrots are a cool weather crop, I sowed mine in Feb. in Texas/ Then I sow them again in the fall. It takes a long time for carrots to grow, like maybe 6 months. I seem to have the patience, but some people don't. Maybe I am doing something wrong. Does this happen to others.Maybe I'm not giving them enough fertilizer.

Magnolia, TX(Zone 8b)

Carrots dont do well if chilled down too fast after pulling either- it can makethem harden and taste funny real fast. I planted carrots mid Feb. too. Will have to see what comes of them.

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

you are absolutely right: carrots takes forever to grow ...
I have tried to grow carrots for year and I had the best tasting ones planting them in August. With our cooler weather they developed an amazing sweet flavor during the Fall and Winter.
I am harvesting once a week now - Just enough for my cooking.

Thumbnail by drthor Thumbnail by drthor Thumbnail by drthor Thumbnail by drthor Thumbnail by drthor
Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

My spring carrots mature much faster then a fall crop.

Cascade, VA(Zone 7a)

ooh, drthor is making me hungry with those photos, lol!

I knew i should have had a talk with you guys in the first place before starting them last year. Silly old me just assumed they would do like any old vegetable that loves the heat, sun and my upkeep of watering, lol.

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

Just try to plant your carrots anyway if you have room.
It took me many years to find out what time to seed every vegetable in Dallas and I am still learning.
Your climate is completely different than others ... just try

Cascade, VA(Zone 7a)

thanks, by the way, what are those larger root vegetables surrounding those carrots in your photos (just out of curiosity), they look like some kind of radish to me....yeah you can tell i am a newbie for sure, LOL :)

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

jmc1987 you are right, they are huge Daikon radishes ... sooo good !

Cascade, VA(Zone 7a)

oh very nice! i may have to try some of those too. Thanks everyone for the great advice and experience :)

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

The thing with carrots is that the seeds need to be kept damp until they germinate which can be awhile. Just when I give up on them they appear.

Delhi, LA

I guess I'll be the odd man out on carrots. A lady from Phonix sent me some Scarlett Nantes carrot seed about three or four years ago. I tried them and liked them. I plant the first ones in March and the second crop when the first get eaten. Our summers for the past three years have stayed above 100 degrees from June through September. I have never been able to detect any difference in taste whether pulled up in July or out of frozen ground in January. I do raised beds only so don't know if that makes a difference. As far as planting, I make a faint impression and plant the seed in the bottom. Mainly to keep the wind from blowing them away. I don't cover them but I do sprikle them ever day to keep the soil frome drying up. I do this until they are up.

Madras, OR

The metal wash tub may have had something to do with the odd flavor. I plant in mid april and cover the row very lightly with grass clippings and then put row cover over the bed, elevated on 6" high sprinkler heads and secured to the ground. I get a lot of wind and freezing and thawing, and this seems to work for me until they get rooted.

In the fall, after a couple of hard frosts, I cover what is left in the ground with about 8 inches of straw and leave them all winter, digging as I need them. They stay good, if protected from freezing and thawing over and over until about April. I like not having to dig them up to store, can or freeze

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