Carrots – Harvest 2013

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Earlier in September, we harvested our garden. Rather than writing about everything all in one post, I wanted to break it up a little, and organize it all a little better. Today is Carrots. You can read about the star of our 2013 Harvest – Goliath the giant Turnip here.

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In the past I have had mixed success with Carrots. I plant them every year I have available ground to plant in, but most of the time they are just a few in a container. They never get very large, but they still have that freshly pulled from the ground Carrot taste. So even if you have a bucket with some soil in it, you can grow some carrots.

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This year is the first time I have been able to actually grow large carrots. They are beautiful and taste amazing. There are a few that are random and forked (including one that looked like it had a camel toe!), but the majority of them look just like they should.

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I had 5 carrot seed packets, but we only ended up planting 4 of them… I think I misplaced the Red Cored Chatenay pack until we had already planted and summer was already in full swing… So I’ll give those a shot next year instead of letting them go to waste. They are supposed to be great for heavy soil. I took pictures of each varieties crop, ready to see?

First up:

Early Nantes

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These were nice and sweet. And possibly my favourite in a fresh-pulled taste test.  The seed packet says they are perfect for freezing, Great for juicing and eating raw in salads.  I will probably grow them again next year if I get a chance. In this pack of seeds was also a sample of the next variety I am going to show you:

Ibiza

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These are “High Quality imperator variety, producing long, slender, cylindrical roots with a very sweet flavour” according to the little piece of paper that came with the sample.  And It was pretty accurate. I wouldn’t call them exceptionally sweet, but they were pretty delicious. Probably the hardest to pull… Even after loosening the soil with the garden fork, we had to go back and go deeper to get these super long ones out of the ground. I am not sure I would plant these again unless I had a large, deep raised bed type situation. I don’t think this garden bed is tilled as deep as some of these grew. But for a (basically) free sample, they were delicious. And made a nice change to the other 3 variates… They weren’t all just orange carrots.

Purple Haze

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This is apparently the only purple imperator-shaped carrot. And we were very excited for them. They mixed everything up nicely and are honestly delicious. I have put them in stew, roasted vegetables, and a few other dishes and the purple fades a little bit, but you can still tell they were purple carrots. They were delicious, and we will almost definitely grow them again next year. The purple colour seemed to make them more fun to pull.

Tenderlong Imperator

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These were seeds I had left over from last year, and they did not disappoint. They were my least favourite of the four varieties we grew, but still a thousand times better than carrots you buy at the grocery store! I will probably try a different variety for next year, but I wouldn’t turn my nose up at these either. Fresh carrots are still the greatest!

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And that was basically the extent of our Carrot Crop this year! While plant spacing was something we could have paid more attention to… I kind of enjoyed getting an early taste of what was to come… Because all those little baby carrots we had to pull to give room to let the others grow to be bigger… They were delicious.

I am completely stoked with our carrot harvest! I honestly thought the gophers or moles would get our crop before we did.

Embrace Carrots!

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