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Growing Carrots from Seeds
Growing carrots from seeds can be challenging, but once you have a few tricks mastered, you can easily grow carrots year-round in Zones 9 and 10.
Tips for Growing Carrots from Seeds
When growing carrots from seeds, germination rates can vary depending on a few factors. The age of the seed, the moisture in the soil, and the depth at which you plant the seeds can be the most common mistakes gardeners make when starting carrots from seed.
Age of Carrot Seeds
When growing carrots from seeds, you want to start with the freshest seeds possible for the quickest and most even germination rates. Carrot seeds do not last very long, and even after just 2 or 3 years, the germination and vigor of the seeds can drop drastically. So start with the best and freshest carrot seeds you can find!
Moisture in Soil
When planting carrot seeds in Zones 9 and 10, the most challenging part is keeping the soil evenly moist the whole time the seeds are germinating. If uneven moisture in the soil occurs, you will likely have patches where the carrot seeds dry up and do not germinate. Additionally, if the soil dries out for even a short period, it will cause even slower germination. Keeping the soil moist is critical and can be accomplished with these tips.
1. Add tons of compost to the soil when prepping the soil for carrot seeding. Compost holds on to twice as much moisture as regular soil and creates a good soil structure for growing carrots and other vegetables.
2. Use row cover or shade cloth to ensure the soil does not dry out.
Depth to Plant Carrot Seeds
Carrot seeds are very small, so when growing them from seed, they should be planted close to the surface of the soil. Any large soil particles will diminish germination. To ensure your carrots germinate quickly and evenly, you want to cover them with a thin layer of finely sifted soil. You can also cover them with a thin layer of vermiculite instead of soil. Vermiculate is very light and allows the seeds to germinate quickly.
After years of perfecting our carrot growing skills, we have found these to be the most common culprits of bad carrot germination. If you can avoid these three mistakes, you will grow carrots successfully. To learn more about growing carrots, check out our video below: