We plant carrots: how to do without thinning
It’s not very easy to grow good carrots. It refers to crops with slow germination, which is why in dry weather seeds can simply disappear in the garden. And if you sow them in abundance, then in case of good weather, on the contrary, multiple thinning will be required. Therefore, it is necessary to create conditions for the rapid germination of seeds and sow them if possible not too thickly.
Preparation of soil and beds
Before you start preparing beds for carrots, you need to know the main features of its agricultural technology, in particular:
- carrots must grow in the sun: even in partial shade its productivity is significantly reduced;
- the best predecessors for carrots are cucumbers, potatoes, cabbage, garlic, and the ideal predecessor and neighbor in the garden are onions;
- do not plant carrots after parsley, dill, celery, and also after the carrots themselves;
- to get an early harvest, you can sow carrots at the earliest possible time, and even before winter, but for winter storage you need to choose late varieties, and sow their seeds only after it gets warmer: not earlier than the end of April.
When choosing soil, you should know that carrots prefer light sandy loam or loam. It can grow even in sand, but on clay soils, root crops will be small and ugly. If the soil is heavy, it is corrected long before sowing, introducing a large amount of river sand, peat and well-rotted compost. The site should be flat, without weeds, dug up twice: in the fall and immediately before sowing.
Alternating carrot and onion beds, effectively fight onion and carrot flies
During the autumn digging, fertilizers are added to the soil, but by no means fresh manure. From manure, root crops with many tops, little resembling a classic carrot, will be obtained, it will be inconvenient to use them, and they will not be stored well. In the fall, they bring in an old humus (bucket per 1 m2) and a liter jar of wood ash. But even better, if even humus is introduced a year before the carrots: for cucumbers, potatoes or cabbage. Directly under the carrots, it will be enough to add ash and, possibly, a little complex mineral fertilizer (for example, 20-30 g of azofoska per 1 m2). In the case of acidic soils, a handful of chalk, slaked lime or dolomite flour is added.
The classic autumn digging of the earth is digging up without breaking lumps, so that in winter the soil freezes better, pests and weed seeds die, and snow moisture is better retained by spring. This technique is not very suitable for carrot beds: it needs very loose, sifted soil. Of course, the final processing will be carried out in the spring, but if a very early sowing is expected, then it is worth grinding the soil structure already in the fall.
The application of peat, sawdust or spruce needles, as well as sifted sand, helps loosening the soil.
In spring, as soon as the soil allows it to work, it should be shed with a solution of copper sulfate (1 tbsp.spoon in a bucket of water), after which it should be re-excavated and walked with any cultivator. After that form ridges. In arid regions, they are not raised, and where rains are frequent, ridges are 20–25 cm high. The width depends on the growth of the gardener: carrots will often have to be weeded, and sometimes thin out, so to make it comfortable, you should not cook rows wider than 1.0–1.2 m.
The distance between plantings of carrots
As for the scheme for planting carrots, we can definitely speak only about the distances between the rows. Furrows during sowing are planned 15–20 cm apart, placing them across the beds: this is more convenient from the point of view of weeding and loosening. The distance between the seeds can be maintained only in the case of pelleted seeds: such granules are quite large, they can be sown individually. In this case, 7-10 cm are left between the seeds.
If the seeds are ordinary, no matter how hard you try, it will be difficult to do without thinning, we will only try to sow them in a convenient way. Ideally, by autumn, by the time of full harvest, between plants should be 10-15 cm. But all summer we will pull out carrots for food as necessary! So, sowing should be more frequent.
Shortly before the autumn harvest, adult root crops should not interfere with each other; this must be taken into account when sowing seeds and subsequent thinning of seedlings
You should always make a discount on the fact that germination will not be 100%. Therefore, if the initial sowing is carried out in such a way that 2.0–2.5 cm is left between the seeds, this is good. They are sown to a depth of 1.5–3.0 cm, depending on soil density and climate: surface sowing in arid regions can lead to seed death from drought, and too deep in heavy soil can complicate seed germination.
Carrot seed preparation
Carrot seeds are referred to as “slow-witted”: sown in dry form, they germinate for a very long time: even in optimal weather conditions, the first sprouts can appear only after 2-3 weeks, and in the early spring - even after a month. The fact is that the surface of the seeds is covered with a dense ethereal shell, and in order to remove it or at least soften it, the seeds must be prepared.
Calibration (rejection) of seeds by specific gravity is rarely involved. The seeds are small, there are a lot of them, and if, for example, for cucumbers or tomatoes, shaking in salt water in 5-7 minutes leads to the fact that inferior seeds will emerge and good ones will drown, for carrots this number does not work: you need to soak for many hours . Although, of course, the preliminary preparation consists precisely in soaking.
But they do it differently. Seeds are kept in a damp cloth at room temperature for 3-4 days, wetting it as it dries. This significantly speeds up germination, but simply soaking is not the most effective way. You can treat the seeds with hot water (but not boiling water, as can be found in some articles!). Dipping them in a bag in water with a temperature of about 50 ° C, wait for the natural cooling of the water.
It is very good to germinate carrot seeds by sparging them with air. If air is introduced into the water into which the seeds are placed, through an atomizer from the aquarium compressor for 8–10 hours, the ether shell is removed almost without residue, and the seeds will germinate no later than a week later.
Some gardeners germinate seeds, but if you start this process, then it will not be easy to separate them
Hardening carrot seeds is probably a recommendation from the category of useless: carrot seedlings are not afraid of frost, and what is useful for peppers and tomatoes, carrots are useless.
Preparing carrot seeds for sowing is a two-edged sword. In a problematic climate, it can be harmful. So, in my practice, I never know beforehand whether carrots will succeed this year. Sowing it most often occurs in May: April crops of moisture in the soil for germination are usually enough, but carrots ripen from the early crops in late summer, when you still can’t put it in the cellar. And in May in our area there is often heat for 30 ° C and not a drop of rain. For visits to the country only on weekends, this is risky farming.
If the seeds are soaked, they will hatch, and heat and drought will destroy them. This applies to any small seeds: parsley, godetia, clarkia, etc., which do not germinate every year. Dry seeds can also lie in the ground, naturally preparing for hatching until favorable weather: it’s a little more reliable. In the middle lane, where there are fewer problems with humidity, seeds are still better prepared for sowing.
Video: preparing carrot seeds for sowing
Whenever carrot seeds are sown, it will not be possible to do without thinning at all. Yes, this is not bad: there will be fresh vitamin “bundle” products. But trying to reduce the number of time-consuming operations for pulling extra seedlings, and at the same time save on seeds, is possible and necessary. Our people have come up with many ways to do this.
Now on sale there are various devices such as active machines. It is convenient to use them, the rows are even, the distance between the seeds is what you need, the seeding depth is the same. It is simple and convenient to work, but only the cost stops, and gardeners come up with other, more economical tricks.Recent entries In April, I process roses so that no pests encroach on my beauties
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Is it worth buying dragee carrot seeds
Like the seeds of most vegetables and flowers, carrot seeds are increasingly sold in granules. This means that they are factory-covered with a specially created shell that breaks up under the conditions of natural soil moisture. Since the size of the granules is at least 2-3 mm, it is relatively simple to sow them individually, at the required distance. This completely eliminates the need for subsequent thinning. Recommended sowing depth - 3 cm.
Peeled seeds are quite large, and if desired, they can be arranged one at a time
Does it make sense to buy such seeds? If there are no problems with money, of course: it is very convenient, only you need to be able to water the garden both immediately after sowing, and later, until the emergence of seedlings. Otherwise, the destruction of the shell at the most crucial moment may be slowed down, and the seeds that stumble, failing to germinate through it, will die. Carrots from such seeds emerge almost as from ordinary seeds, 15–20 days after sowing.
One of the most effective and economical ways is to sow carrots on a tape. Sometimes they use adhesive tape of the required size, but for a long time our housewives came up with the idea of sowing seeds on toilet paper. Having prepared such a tape in advance, on long winter evenings, in the spring they lay it in a groove about 3 cm deep, water it abundantly and cover it with soil.
Sticking seeds to paper is a painstaking but reliable occupation
Usually glued on the tape seeds with a distance of 2.0-2.5 cm. To do this, cut a piece of paper: its length is chosen equal to the length of the proposed beds. They cook a regular starch paste, introducing a little boric acid into it (a pinch per 1 liter of solution). Having laid out the paper on the table, a paste is applied from the dropper at the desired points and the seeds are carefully laid out in these drops. After drying, gently fold the paper into a roll and store until spring.
A modification of the method is sowing seeds in napkins. Everything is exactly the same, but they take napkins of a convenient size and apply paste droplets in several rows, with a distance between the rows of 15–20 cm. It is possible according to another scheme, 5 × 5 cm, to whom it is more convenient.
Of course, when using this method, you need to be sure that the seed germination will be close to 100%, so that the work is not wasted, and there are no "bald spots" on the bed. You need to use only reliable seeds.
Video: planting a ribbon with carrot seeds in the garden
Sowing with sand
Sowing carrot seeds, like any other small seeds, has long been carried out with sand. Everything is very simple: the seeds are “diluted” with any convenient amount of fine sand. For example, about 1 liter of sand is taken on a dessert spoon of seeds (about the same amount is now put in the package) (each gardener has his own proportions). It is important that the sand is clean and dry, because the most important thing is to mix the ingredients well so that the distribution of seeds across the sand is uniform.
Further there are options. Some lovers sow this mixture in a dry form, while others moisturize slightly and scatter “pulp” along the grooves. In my opinion, sowing a dry mixture is much more convenient and natural. On what area of the bed you need to sprinkle the prepared mixture, you can simply read it on the package with seeds.
Carrot seeds are almost invisible in the sand, and the sowing turns into a scattering of sand into a groove
Pasting with a paste
The paste is made from potato (or corn) starch or wheat flour, make it liquid. For example, at 1 tbsp. 1 liter of cold water is taken in a spoon of flour, brought to a boil with stirring and cooled to 30–35 ° C.
When stirring with a thin stream, seeds are poured into a warm paste (it is possible to pack seeds per 1 liter of paste), mix well, transfer to a small watering can without a strainer or into a kettle and pour the mixture into prepared moist grooves with a preliminary calculated flow rate.
As in the sand, the seeds must be distributed evenly in the paste.
Sowing carrot seeds in a bag
Sowing "in a pouch" is a combined technique combining the natural swelling of seeds and dilution of the mass with paste or sand. In a bag made of natural fabric or in gauze, the seeds are buried early in the spring in the ground to a depth of about 15 cm, making a mark next to it. For 10-15 days in moist soil, the seeds swell and begin to hatch. At this time, the bag is dug up and the seeds are poured into a bowl.
In a bowl, the seeds are mixed with sand and the mixture is sown in a well-shed groove: seeds that stick to must necessarily need moisture, they will sprout very soon, not later than a week later. Instead of sand, you can take starch: there is a modification of the method with dry starch, and there is with liquid; in the latter case, the seeds are not actually sown, but are "poured" into the bed.
Video: preparing seeds for sowing in a bag
Syringe as a device for sowing carrots
On sale there are the simplest manual “planters” for carrot seeds. They are plastic vessels with a metering device located at the bottom. When the piston is pressed, the seeds are gradually squeezed out of the vessel.
In fact, a purchased planter resembles a regular syringe
Since the device costs about 100-150 rubles, gardeners usually use a used medical syringe for this purpose, which works just as well. It is important that the diameter of the outlet corresponds to the size of the seeds: take a syringe capacity of 10-20 ml.
Sowing carrots using egg trays
When using cardboard or plastic egg trays, the location of the holes on the bed becomes uniform, which is often used by gardeners when sowing various vegetables. The lattice is slightly pressed into the loosened soil, where it leaves behind itself the holes of the required depth. In these holes and sow seeds. Most often, this method is used when sowing radishes, but for carrots, reception is not bad. Many gardeners sow 2 seeds in each hole, and then still pull out extra seedlings.
Most often, the tray is used simply as a marking tool
A modification of the method is the option when there are many unnecessary trays available. Then a small hole is made in each cell (for ease of sprouting), and then on any convenient table, soil is poured into all the cells and seeds are sown in them. After that, the trays are laid out in a garden bed and so left until the harvest.
If the carrots sprouted well, caring for it is easy. It is important to maintain optimal soil moisture before and after emergence, avoiding drying out and soil crusts. If it was not possible to sow evenly, with the appearance of the first true leaves, the first thinning is carried out, leaving 2-3 cm between the plants. The second time is thinned out after another 3 weeks: the pulled out plants can be put in soup.
Regular watering of carrots is necessary: the soil should be moderately moist at a depth of 30 cm. Only from the end of August, watering is reduced, and 3 weeks before the root crops are excavated, they are stopped. Soil cultivation and weed control are essential throughout the summer. The first time they feed carrots in early summer, the second - after another 2 months. The composition of top dressing is wood ash (a glass on a bucket of water) or azofoska (1-2 tablespoons per bucket).
Success in growing carrots is largely dependent on proper sowing. This must be done on time and, if possible, sparsely. With a thickened planting, frequent thinning is necessary, and missing the deadlines for this work negatively affects the development of plants.