Planting Guide for Growing Carrots in Balcony from Seed
Hello gardeners, today we are here with a new topic again. Do you want to know how to grow carrots in the balcony? Well, follow this complete article to know about growing carrots in the balcony. In this article, we also discuss all the requirements for growing carrots in the balcony.
Introduction to Growing Carrots in Balcony in Pots or Containers
The carrot is a root vegetable and it is often claimed to be the perfect health food. It is very crunchy, tasty, and highly nutritious. Carrots are a very good source of beta carotene, fibre and they also contain vitamin K1, potassium, and even antioxidants. Carrots also have several health benefits. This information may be useful for growing carrots in pots, containers, or raised beds on the Terrace, in the Backyard, in the Greenhouse/Polyhouse. Now, let us get into the details for Growing Carrots in Balcony with full painting guide instructions.
A Step By Step Guide for Growing Carrots in Balcony
If you don’t have garden space for growing carrots, you can easily grow carrots in pots instead. While many standard-length carrots will not grow as long in containers, most of the smaller varieties survive well in them. Make sure you have a very deep container that allows the edible root to grow well into the soil and always keep the soil wet to maximize the growth of the plant.
Varieties/Types for Growing Carrots in Balcony
Though you can grow any type of carrot in a pot or container, short varieties are very better. There are four common types or varieties in which the carrot varieties fall into:
- Imperator: Imperator carrots are very sweetest; they are 8 – 12 inches long and slender. To grow this type, you’ll need a container or pot that is more than 12 inches deep.
- Danvers: This is more intense in taste, they are 6 – 7 inches long, slender, but they are wider at the top than the Imperator types.
- Nantes: This type of carrots are sweet and crispy, they are 6 – 7 inches long, more cylindrical than tapered. Very good for growing in containers or pots.
- Chantenay: They grow up to 5 inches, very wide at the top, and narrow, cone-shaped, can be easily grown in poor soils.
Suitable Containers or Pots for Growing Carrots in Balcony
Choose a very wide pot or container that’s at least 1-foot or 0.30-m deep. Deeper is even very better. Carrots usually develop underground, and the root system needs a lot of space to grow and survive well. Similarly, the wider the pot or container is, the more carrots you can grow.
The selected pot or container should also have adequate drainage holes to prevent excess water from causing the carrots to rot.
The type of pot or container does not matter much as long as it has enough depth to grow a carrot. Clay, plastic, or stone is also fine, whether it may be circular or rectangular. If your pot or container doesn’t have drainage holes, you can easily drill your own.
Better to clean your container or pot with soap and water. If you have a previously used container, you need to scrub out the inside before planting your carrots. Bacteria and many microscopic insect eggs often hide inside the used containers and may hinder your yield of carrots if they infect your carrot plants.
Suitable Soil for Growing Carrots in Balcony
Carrots usually prefer well-drained, very light, and aerated soil that doesn’t obstruct root growth. You can even buy quality potting soil for containers or you can make your own. First, make sure that the prepared soil for growing carrots is more sandy than clayey and it has no stones or else your carrots will be crooked and bent. The soil should be slightly acidic to a slightly alkaline state, with the pH should range from 5.5 – 7.5. Ideally, it needs to be 6 – 6.8.
Prepare your potting mix by adding 1 part of the soil, 1 part of compost or even well-rotted manure, and 1 part of perlite. If you want to make a soilless mix, you need to add 1 part of peat moss or coco peat, 1 part of compost or even well-rotted manure, and 1 part of perlite, vermiculite, or even sand. You can also add time-based fertilizer which is very low in nitrogen at the time of mixing the soil for your carrot plant.
Suitable Location for Growing Carrots in Balcony
Choose a location that is very sunny, however, in late summer or warm climates; you can even keep your carrot plants in partial sun.
Suitable Temperature for Growing Carrots in Balcony from Seed
The seed germination temperature for growing carrots needs to be between 5.5 – 32°C and the ideal or optimum seed germination temperature needs to be between 12 – 24°C. Carrot seeds usually germinate in the time-frame of nearly 1-3 weeks, slower in low temperatures.
Best tasting carrot roots are easily grown when the temperature ranges around 15 – 22°C during the growing period. As you are growing carrots in pots or containers, you can even try to adjust the temperature a bit by moving the containers or pots to shade if the weather or climate is warm and in more sun if the weather or climate is cold.
Tips and Safety Measure for Growing Carrots in Balcony
- Use a suitable and large size container with the required number of drainage holes at the bottom
- Use appropriate growing medium
- Choose a right and a perfect place on your balcony
- Water them regularly
- Check the pH of the soil before planting
- Plant the seeds with correct spacing
- Use a suitable fertilizer
- Thin the plant when it is required
- Be aware of common pests and diseases
Planting and Spacing in Growing Carrots in Balcony
Carrots like cooler weather or climate, but they still won’t take kindly to frost. The preferred temperature of carrot needs to be around 13°C or a bit warmer, so early spring is fine.
However, they will not do well in temperatures over about 29°C.
Dig the holes that are 1/2 an inch or 1.25 cm deep. Space your carrot seeds about 1⁄2 to 1 inch or 1.3 to 2.5 cm apart. You can even plant them further apart if you wish. Drop nearly 2-3 carrot seeds in each hole.
Carrot seeds are very tiny and very hard to plant. If you drop some, that is fine. You can thin out the carrot plants later once they are sprouted.
Fill the seed sown holes in with your planting medium. You should not pack the medium into the holes since doing this may crush the carrot seeds. Instead of it, lightly drop the medium into each hole. Make sure that you get every hole filled.
Water the carrot seeds thoroughly. You need to add enough water to make the medium very wet. You don’t need to make any puddles, but your soil always should be wet to the touch, not just moist. Your carrot seeds need enough water to start or begin the germination process. Better use a gentle sprayer so you don’t stir up the seeds.
Water Requirement for Growing Carrots in Balcony
Watering is one of the essential things to remember when learning how to grow carrots in pots or containers is to maintain an adequate water level constantly. Water them regularly and evenly to keep the soil slightly moist. You need to check the soil moisture level with your finger to see if the medium is drying before watering and you should never allow the soil to dry out completely. At the end, when your carrot plant roots are about to mature that means after 3/4 of their mature size, you need to reduce the frequency of watering as too much moisture at the maturing stage of the plant may lead to growth crack in carrots.
How to Thin the Carrot Plant
Better to thin out your carrots once they reach 1 inch or 2.5 cm. Once your carrots start to grow into seedlings, you need to cut out any extra plants with the help of scissors or gardening shears. The carrot plants you plant should be spaced 2 to 3 inches or 5.1 to 7.6 cm apart to help them grow very well. If you try to pull out or remove the unwanted seedlings, you could damage your other plants. So, remove or pull out very carefully.
Plant Care While Growing Carrots in Balcony
Better to use the additional growing medium to correct the growth problems. If your plants start leaning, you will straighten them up gently and add extra soil to stabilize them. Similarly, if your carrot plant starts peeking through the top of the soil, you need to cover them up with more soil. When the carrot plant peeks out of the soil, it will turn green at the top. It will not harm them, but they don’t look as pretty.
In case if you miss this: Growing Organic Spinach At Home.
Suitable Fertilizer for Growing Carrots in Balcony
As the carrot plant is a root plant, they don’t prefer soil that is very high in nitrogen. To encourage root growth, use a fertilizer that is very low in nitrogen but very high in phosphorous and even potassium. For example, a formula of NPK 5-10-10 is good. It is a very good idea to add time-based fertilizer or aged manure to the potting soil in the beginning or starting stage. If you have not added anything to the soil before planting, feed the carrot plant with liquid fertilizer biweekly according to the product’s instructions. You can even make your organic liquid fertilizer from compost or from manure, which is also known as Compost Tea.
Common Pests and Diseases found While Growing Carrots in Balcony
The pests of the carrot plant are listed below:
- Carrot rust fly
- Carrot weevil
- Flea beetle
- Root-knot nematodes
The diseases of the carrot plant are listed below:
- Alternaria leaf blight
- Black rot
- Cercospora leaf blight
- Cottony rot
- Downy mildew
- Powdery mildew
- Bacterial leaf blight
- Soft rot
- Cavity spot
How and When to Harvest Carrots
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Harvesting time may vary, from 50 to 100 days. It depends on the variety, climate, and other growing conditions. Most of the varieties are ready for harvest within 60 to 75 days, whereas, you can harvest baby carrots even much earlier. Before picking or harvesting them, you need to check that whether your carrots have reached the desired size or not by uprooting a couple of carrot plants.
You can harvest your carrots when they reach peak color. Depending on the variety or type, your carrots could be even yellow, red, orange, or purple. Generally, they will nearly take 2 to 2 1/2 months to fully mature and reach the right and perfect color. Grasp the greens near the highest of the bases and gently wiggle them out of place. The sooner you harvest mature carrots, the sweeter they’re going to be once you can finally eat them.
Commonly Asked Questions about Growing Carrots in Balcony
How deep do containers or pots need to be for carrots?
Containers need to be 12 inches deep for growing carrots.
Most of the carrot varieties require a minimum container depth of 12 inches, with 1.5 to 2 cm of spacing available between seedlings and therefore the container edge. Good spacing and depth will allow and encourage carrots to grow well and fully develop.
How long do carrot plants take to grow in containers?
It takes nearly 2.5 months to grow carrots.
Your delicious container-grown carrots will be ready after 2.5 months, they can even be harvested a week or two beforehand if you prefer them very sweeter.
What is the best soil for growing carrots?
Plant carrot plants in very loose, well-drained soil that has a very good mixture of clay and sand.
How often should I water the carrot plant?
Like most other vegetables, even growing carrots need a minimum of 1 inch of water. If they can’t get an adequate supply from rainfall, you’ll get to water the soil. once you water your carrots, confirm to soak the soil completely. If you simply wet the soil’s surface, the roots won’t grow as deeply.
What is the best way to grow carrots?
Carrots usually prefer full sun and relatively very cool soil. In a raised bed, the neighboring plants will help shade the soil and keep it from getting too hot or warm. Consistent moisture can produce the tastiest carrots, so give them about 1 inch of water per week.
At what temperature do carrots germinate?
The temperature needs to be around 21°C.
Carrots need very warm temperatures for the seeds to germinate which is around 21°C.
How many carrot seeds can I plant per hole?
You can very easily plant 2 to 3 per hole or sprinkle the carrot seeds all along the prepared row and later you can thin the seedlings to one every 3 to 4 inches.
Why won’t my carrot seeds germinate?
Carrots are very slow to germinate, but they are even slower and sometimes they won’t sprout at all if the soil temperatures are very low. Since the very tiny seeds are sown only ½ inch deep, it is more essential to keep the soil moist through the long germination period or cycle. The carrot plant may die if the top layer dries out or crusts over.
That’s all folks about Growing Carrots In Balcony from Seed. Happy growing!