Types of carrots
Not much bigger than a typical globe radish, French Market carrots produce gourmet-quality 1-2" in diameter cuties that are fabulous raw, steamed or canned. Perfect for container gardening.
Purple Haze carrots dress up any dish with a dazzling display of purple color. Purple Haze carrots have a dark purple skin and an orange interior; however boiling in water will make the skin turn orange. Steaming will preserve the purple.
Yellow Cream carrots, a delicious, bright heirloom carrot from France has been winning over chefs and gardeners across the the world.
Popular in Europe, Snow White carrots have a mild, fine flavor with a very small core. Rare in North America, these white carrots are incredibly sweet and tender.
Tender Sweet carrots are Imperator type growing to 12 inches long on average. Tender Sweet is the most common type of carrot sold in supermarkets.
Italian Valerio Carrots hail from Northern Italy. They are a staple in many Italian dishes; popular because of their sweet taste.
Asian Red Carrots are a special hybrid from Japan where it is revered for very attractive ruby red skin and interior. Long and slender, Asian Red Carrots can grow up to 2 feet.
Chantenay carrots are distinguished from other types of carrots by their short cone-shaped root. Chantenay are wider at the top than other varieties narrowing quickly to a tapered point. They are not as sweet as other carrots so Chantenay carrots are used mostly for processing.
Nantes carrots are cylindrical, short with a more blunt tip than Imperator carrots, and attain high yields in a range of conditions. Nantes carrots freeze well and are the preferred carrot for canning and preserving because of their uniform shape. Nantes carrots do not store well.
Imperator carrots are grown as market carrots because they are sweet and store extremely well. These are the type of carrots that are sold at supermarkets. Imperator carrots have long, slender roots tapered to an elongated tip. They have high levels of beta-carotene and sugar content.
Carrots are probably the most important and popular root vegetable grown today; only beets are ranking number one. Back in the day, all carrots where wild and purple. Small, woody and hard to eat, wild carrots where almost certainly never eaten raw because they where so hard and bitter tasting. Several centuries of cultivation brought about the genetic changes we see in carrots today. Slowly, over thousands of years their size and color changed from shades of purple to variations of white, orange and yellow. It wasn’t until the eighteenth century that European plant breeders perfected the seed varieties we see today.There are two carrot types; Eastern carrots and Western carrots. Eastern carrots would be considered wild carrots today because of their purple color. They are primarily grown in Eastern Europe and Russia. Western carrots are distinguished by their orange color and sweet taste. The last 30 years has seen the introduction of many cultivars that vary in color, size and shape.
People have been growing carrots in pots, gardens and on the farm for generations. Carrots are easy to grow, store well and are good for you. Growing carrots in pots is relatively straightforward providing the container is deep enough, is filled with the right type of soil and drains well. Carrots make an ideal container plant because they require little attention once the tops form and fill out. Heirloom carrot varieties like Romeo and Chatenay are ideal for container growing because of their short root. Garden carrots are typically grown in rows where watering and weeding are a challenge. Carrot plants can either be row irrigated or sprinklered from above. In both cases, there is the potential for the development of waterborne diseases, which can destroy a carrot crop.
A better way to grow carrots is to use a Crop Circle. A small Crop Circle inserted into a medium sized garden container is ideal for growing carrots. A medium Crop Circle irrigates carrots growing in circles. A larger Crop Circle grows carrots in a 60-foot circle.