It is after several failed attempts that I finally managed to cultivate reasonably nice early carrots in the manure bench. The first times were several years ago, when the experience of failure was much greater than the roots that came out of the effort: the germination was miserable, the few carrots were small and crippled, and the taste was like the tongue out the window. So I dropped that.
The last few years, however, I have thrown myself into it again, and now I think I have better control over what I do - and what I should not do. The picture is from today's harvest, where I was already able to take the first “babies” a month ago, and so far a few kilos have been harvested. The other day, bush beans were sown in pots to replace the carrots in a couple of weeks - and by that time, the open-sown carrots can probably take over.
The recipe for the more serious carrot cultivation (as opposed to the careless clinging of earlier times) has i.a. been:
Only fresh seeds, and an early variety specifically intended for cultivation. This year, Amsterdam Forcing and Early Nantes 5 have been sown.
- the soil in the manure bank is loosened a few weeks before sowing, and sowing is only done when the soil temperature has risen to at least 8 ° on average (measurement morning and evening)
- the soil is covered with non-woven fabric, which is watered to keep the soil suitably moist
- in the event of a frost, another layer of non-woven fabric can be laid
After germination (which can take up to at least 3 weeks) comes weeding and THINNING - which must be taken seriously despite pronounced laziness
Well-turned compost is placed between the rows when the plants are 10-20 cm high
- and when growing in a manure bank, of course, water regularly. The soil must not dry out between waterings.