Genus and species: Daucus carota var sativus
Soils: Deep, friable soils free of obstructions.
- Poorly drained soils are likely to encourage the spread of bacterial diseases
- Heavy clay soils are also likely to encourage production of twisted, malformed roots of poor quality
- Optimum soil pH 5.5-6.5
- Fertilizer requirements depend on soil fertility and are applied at planting
- Carrots require 70-120kg/ha of N, 30-35kg/ha of P and 0-55kg/ha of K
- Avoid fresh manure as this causes root hairs on carrot root
- Adequate soil moisture necessary at germination
- Avoid crusting which affects root development.
- Growth requires both adequate moisture and drainage
- Excess water can reduce root color intensity
- Drought stress lowers quality
- Inadequate drainage leads to impeded growth, misshapen roots.
- Fluctuating water leads to cracking.
- More foliar diseases with overhead irrigation or high RH
- Adequate moisture of 45-90cm is required during the growing season
Harvesting and handling
- Carrots for the fresh market are harvested when the majority of the roots are 2.5-3.5cm in diameter at the crown
- They can be harvested 65-85days or longer after planting depending on the temperature
- Processing carrots are left in the ground longer as both the dry matter and color, increases with maturity
- The carrots are hand pulled or fork lifted.
The ground may need to be irrigated to facilitate easy harvesting