How to Start Carrot Farming is aimed at bringing to your perusal the procedures involved in starting a successful Carrot farming from beginning to end.
- Land Selection and Preparation for carrot farming
- Seed Selection for carrot farming
- Sowing Seeds
- Caring to ensure a healthy carrot farming
- Weeding to ensure a healthy carrot farming
- Marketing and Storage
Carrots are root vegetables, usually orange in color. Carrots are easy to cultivate. All they need to thrive well in loose fertile soil free of pebbles and stones. Carrots can be cultivated any time of the year but are best grown in springs and fall.
Short and finger-size carrots that mature within 8-10 weeks of cultivation are the best ideal for all-year-round growing.
They exist in species like chantenay, amsterdam, minicora, red coreda, parmexa and thumblina.
Carrots are widely consumed across Nigeria. This is owing to its high nutritious content and health benefits to humans. They are eaten raw and added as a recipe to meals such as; salad, indomie, fried rice, etc.
Carrots contain essential nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, magnesium, and lots more.
Carrots reduce cancerous growth, fights lungs cancer, helps in clear sight vision, boost immune function, and lowers blood pressure and other functions. All these make venturing into carrot farming very lucrative and worth investing in.
How to Start Carrot Farming:
1. Land Selection and Preparation for carrot farming
Acquire a land with loose, fertile loamy soil in a place that is not stony or rocky. This is because carrot is a root crop.
Therefore, the availability of stones on the ground could result in stunted growth of carrot roots. Till your soil to propel easy penetration of roots down the soil.
Do not add manure to the soil before growing the carrot. Instead, sprinkle bone meal on your land.
Bone meals are rich in phosphorus. This will help boost roots down the soil. Do not add manure to the soil before growing the carrot.
Instead, sprinkle bone meal on your land (bone meals are rich in phosphorus. This will help boost root growth while the nitrogen in manure will cause carrots to grow hairy roots. Water the land deeply, and leave it for about 48hours before cultivation.
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2. Seed Selection for carrot farming
There are varieties of carrot species suitable for cultivation in Nigeria. These include Nantes, Amsterdam, minicora, permexa, chantanay, etc.
These species thrive well in Nigeria. They all require rich loamy soil under a temperature range of 15C – 18C to grow optimally.
3. Sowing Seeds
Use the handle of your hoe or rake to make a shallow trench to sow seed in rows. Cover seeds lightly with about 0.25-inch potting soil.
Gently use the heel of your hand or board to press down the covered seed. Ensure you give enough spacing between seeds.
Carrot seeds are tiny. Therefore, mix carrot seeds with sand in your palm to make sprinkling of seeds across the bed easier. This will reduce the chances of over-sowing seed. Pelletized carrot seeds are also recommended.
They are bigger in size and easy to hold compared to the normal carrot seeds. When planting pelletized carrot seeds, thinning of the carrot plant is no longer necessary.
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4. Caring to ensure a healthy carrot farming
Cover the bed with row covers to protect the cultivated seed against drips of rain or irrigation. In hot weather conditions, cover planting beds with burlap and sprinkle burlap with water to keep the seedbed moist.
When seeds begin to sprout, remove the burlap. Sprinkle bed with a fine spray to ensure soil is moist until the carrot plant is well-rooted.
Deep watering of soil is also very essential to make carrot taproot grow straight and boost carrot plant growth.
5. Weeding to ensure a healthy carrot farming
Remove unwanted plants and grasses to avoid unhealthy competition for space, water, nutrients, and lots more with your carrot plants.
Use garden scissors to cut off the top of carrot seedlings that are too close. Cut carrot seedlings 1 inch to avoid overcrowding of crops and allow optimum growth of neighboring roots. Pelletized seeds do not need to be thinned.
Most carrots that are ready for harvest are ½ – ¾ inch in diameter. Do not grab the foliage of the carrot plant and pull. It often results in a handful of foliage without the carrot.
Therefore, loosen the soil with a garden fork, and cut off green tops about ½ inch from the top of the carrot, rinse, and sun-dry.
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8. Marketing and Storage
Take your carrot to the market for sale and get potential buyers for it. Immerse carrots completely in water (in a container with a lid) to store carrots efficiently. Keep the container in a refrigerator changing water as frequently as 4 – 5 days.
We hope this helped!