Growing carrots and other root vegetables in the garden -how to grow carrots HELPFUL
Carrots are a popular root vegetable that are easy to grow in sandy soil. They are resistant to most pests and diseases, and are a good late season crop that can tolerate frost. Not all carrots are orange; varieties vary in color from purple to white.
Carrot root flies are maggots that feed on and destroy the roots of many root crops. Control by harvesting plants as soon as possible. Do not apply insecticides to plant parts that are to be eaten. A soil insecticide may be used to control maggots at planting time.
Flea beetles chew small, round holes in leaves. They can spread disease and destroy the crop, especially when the plants are very young.
Forked roots may be due to rocky or stony soil or heavy soil. See section on soil. Transplanting of long-rooted vegetables will also lead to forked roots.
All tops with no roots or small roots is a condition usually caused by planting too close or by not thinning plants. Excessive nitrogen fertilization can also contribute to extensive top growth at the expense of root growth.
Hot tasting/pithy radishes may result from hot weather and dry soil, or harvesting too late.
Aster Yellows (carrots). Common symptoms of this disease are hairy roots and yellow tops. The disease is spread by plant-sucking insects called aster leafhoppers.
Many of the problems associated with flying insects can be minimized by using a floating row cover. Providing a physical barrier to insect attack while allowing light and rainfall to penetrate will result in an insect-free crop that may also mature earlier. This material is often made of a spunbonded polyester that resembles that of interfacing, commonly used in sewing. With gentle care, the cover can be used for several seasons. National seed catalogs and local garden centers offer this product routinely.
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