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You may have tried growing carrots planted seeds, used fertilizers, watered well but still witnessing carrots that are very small in size i.e, below 3-4 inches.
Or you might have long ones but are very thin and skinny. And wondering what probably is the reason behind this. And what can you do to prevent this from happening and get bigger longer thicker carrots?
There are mainly six reasons why your carrots are so small:
- You are not using the right soil for growing your carrots.
- You are not growing the right variety of carrots.
- Surrounding weather is too hot for growing carrots.
- Your carrots might be overcrowded.
- Your soil has nematodes.
- The carrots are not getting enough water.
Let me explain these reasons in detail.
1. You Are Not Using The Right Soil for Growing Your Carrots:
One of the main reasons why your carrots have grown longer probably lies in what soil have you selected for growing carrots. If your soil is heavy clay soil it will prevent the carrots from growing big.
Carrots need loose soil for growing. You can mix sand or other soilless mediums along with your clay soil and make it loose enough so the carrots can easily penetrate and grow to their optimal sizes.
2. You Are Not Growing The Right Variety of Carrot:
Another reason may be what variety of carrot you have chosen for growing. Some carrots are by nature not very long. So if you want to grow long carrots opt for a variety that is suitable for growing long.
3. Surrounding Weather is Too Hot for Growing Carrots:
Weather can also play a very crucial role here. The ideal temperature for growing carrots is between 55 F to 75 F. If your weather is warmer than this chances are your carrots will be smaller than usual.
4. Your Carrots Might be Overcrowded:
when you grow carrots it is very important that you give enough resources to the plant. When there are too many plants in place they fight for the same resource. Most of the time overcrowding results in smaller carrots.
After planting carrot seeds, you have to thin them out leaving at least a couple of inches gap. Later again thin them and keep a gap of at least 4 inches.
5. Your Soil Have Nematodes:
You can also have a nematode infested soil. Nematodes cause root knot disease to the plant and can cause tiny carrots.
To be sure, get your soil tested for nematodes. I have discussed nematodes in this post so do check that for details.
6. The Carrots Are Not Getting Enough Water:
Also, check if the carrots have cracks. Cracking is a sign that your plant is not getting enough water. If your carrots aren’t cracking, moisture isn’t the issue here.
How to Get Bigger Carrots
Here are some steps you can take to get bigger and thicker carrots.
1. Start With The Soil
To begin the process start working with the soil to make it more suitable for growing bigger carrots.
- Remove weeds properly. Here is a detailed article on how to remove weeds from your soil.
- Till the soil up to 8 inches. This will make the soil loose.
- Add some sand, of other growing mediums like peat moss or coco coir loosen up the soil even more.
- Remove any obstacle like the rocks of lumps in the soil; they can prevent the growth of your carrots.
- Add organic fertilizers that are rich in potassium and not much in nitrogen. Too much nitrogen can result in lush foliage and very little root growth.
2. Select The Right Spot for Growing Carrots:
Your carrots should get full sun or almost full sun. They need lots of sunlight to grow to their ideal size. You can read more about the impact of sunlight on growing plants in this post.
3. Choose The Right Variety:
Be sure that you are not growing any small-sized carrot variety. Choose a variety like Touchon or Hercules that produces large-sized carrots.
4. Keep The Moisture Level Intact:
For growing a big size carrot water intake will be high. Keep watering your plant at regular intervals. Spread mulch on top of the soil to prevent water loss.
5. Give Them Enough Time to Grow:
Generally, carrots need three months to mature but sometimes depending on the variety you might need to give them more time.
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