With the proper soil, carrots are easy to grow! One way to ensure your carrots grow correctly is by fertilizing the surrounding soil. The additive you choose will make sure your carrots receive everything they need. What nutrients do carrots need, and what fertilizers will provide them? We've done the research and can tell you what fertilizer is best for this root vegetable!
Here are some great options for carrot fertilizers:
- Lilly Miller Morcrop Tomato and Vegetable Food
- Jobe's Organics Vegetable and Tomato
- Jobe's Organics All-Purpose Fertilizer
- Down to Earth Organic Vegetable
- Espoma GT4 Garden-Tone
- The Old Farmer's Almanac Organic Vegetable Fertilizer
- Burpee Tomato and Vegetable Fertilizer
Picking the right fertilizer is especially important for the foods we plan on eating. Keep reading to learn more about these fertilizers, what nutrients this vegetable needs, and more important information!
The best fertilizer you can pick will provide the nutrients that your soil currently lacks. It will be essential to test your soil before attempting to fertilize it. This test will ensure you give the proper nutrients for your growing plants.
1. Lilly Miller
Lilly Miller Tomato and Vegetable Food has a 5-10-10 NPK ratio. This fertilizer is excellent for carrots and many other types of vegetables. The nutrients provided by this fertilizer can last for up to six weeks. Lilly Miller recommends using this product at the time of planting and every four to six weeks through the season.
2. Jobe's Vegetable and Tomato Food
Jobe's Organic Vegetable and Tomato fertilizer is an organic granular type fertilizer. This soil additive has an NPK ratio of 2-5-3 and contains 7% calcium.
Calcium is another crucial nutrient for plants. This nutrient helps plants to form cell walls and membranes.
You can use this fertilizer on both established plants and before planting. You should reapply every four weeks or as needed.
3. Jobe's Organics All-Purpose Fertilizer
Another excellent choice for your carrots is Jobe's Organics All-Purpose Fertilizer. This product has an NPK ratio of 4-4-4. So, this fertilizer is ideal for soil that needs more primary nutrients. This all-purpose fertilizer also contains 8% calcium.
4. Down to Earth
Down to Earth Organic Vegetable Garden is an all-natural fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 4-4-4. It also contains 6% calcium and 1% magnesium.
You can use this brand of fertilizer at any point in the growing process. It is recommended to use Down to Earth fertilizer once per month through the season.
5. Espoma GT4 Garden-Tone
Garden-Tone by Espoma is an all-natural plant food that works well for most vegetables. This product has an NPK ratio of 3-4-4. Garden-Tone provides all essential nutrients to plants without using any hazardous ingredients.
6. Old Farmer's Almanac Organic Fertilizer
This fertilizer by Old Farmer's Almanac has an NPK ratio of 8-4-8. It also contains 3% sulfur. This fertilizer is certified by the OMRI (Organic Materials Review Institute) as an organic fertilizer for vegetables, fruits, herbs, and shrubs.
Old Farmer's Almanac fertilizer lasts in the soil for six to eight weeks. So, you should reapply every few months or as necessary. Keep in mind that this has a higher nitrogen content. Be careful of over-fertilizing your carrots.
7. Burpee Tomato and Vegetable Fertilizer
Burpee Tomato and Vegetable Fertilizer has an NPK ratio of 3-6-4. You can use this plant food at any planting stage, from established to just starting. For best results, Burpee recommends reapplying every two months during the growing season.
What nutrients do carrots need to grow?
Making sure your carrots receive the correct nutrients is the best way to get bigger and tastier vegetables when you harvest them! Some essential nutrients to provide your carrots are potassium, phosphorous, nitrogen, calcium, sulfur, and magnesium.
While all nutrients are important, carrots especially need potassium and phosphorous. These are considered primary nutrients and are required in large amounts by plants.
Nitrogen is also considered a primary nutrient. However, this is less important to carrot growth. Nitrogen is an essential part of chlorophyll which helps the plant develop healthy foliage and stems. Too much nitrogen for carrots can cause them to grow in multiple directions and grow little white hairs.
Calcium, sulfur, and magnesium are considered secondary nutrients. These are still needed in high quantities. However, they are required less than potassium, phosphorous, and nitrogen are.
Keep in mind that the secondary nutrients can affect the soil's pH level. So, be on the lookout for rises in pH when using calcium and magnesium. Sulfur will lower the pH, so keep an eye on any drops if using that additive.
How often do I fertilize carrots?
In general, you should be fertilizing your plants around once a month throughout the growing season. That being said, you should keep an eye on your plants to determine if you need to fertilize more or less than that.
Over-fertilizing with nitrogen can cause your carrots to produce thicker foliage. However, it can also cause your carrot to form multiple roots. It may also grow little white hairs due to the excessive nitrogen content.
You should also be keeping an eye on your phosphorus levels. While this nutrient is vital to successfully growing carrots, too much can kill your plants. Excessive phosphorus levels can make it more difficult for your vegetable to absorb nutrients like iron or zinc.
What kind of soil do carrots need?
Carrots prefer soil that is either loam or sand. The area you're planting should have a pH balance between 6.0 and 8.0.
One of the most critical factors for planting carrots is how loose the soil is. Carrots will not grow well in soil that is heavy, compacted, or poorly drained.
Before planting this vegetable, you should till the area at least 12 inches down. You should remove any rocks or stones and amend the soil if necessary.
Are coffee grounds good for carrots?
Coffee grounds can be great for carrots for several reasons. Old coffee grounds can be used as a slow-release fertilizer. This everyday item is filled with nitrogen and small amounts of phosphorus and potassium.
You can also use coffee grounds to help you plant your seeds more evenly. To do this, you'll need to place dry coffee grounds into a cup. Then, pour a package of seeds into the cup. You can even include radish seeds which grow very well with carrots.
You should cover the cup with your hand and give it a good shake. Finally, you can spread the mixture into rows.
Coffee grounds can also act as a natural repellent. Many slugs and snails don't like coffee grounds. So, creating a line around your plants can protect them. Coffee grounds are also great at repelling carrot flies.
Do carrots need lots of water?
Carrots will need at least an inch of water each week. It's important to water your plants deeply. All pants benefit from this method of watering. However, it's especially beneficial for root vegetables because they grow underground.
Watering deeply will soak the earth better. This gives your plants the best chance at spreading deeply.
Do carrots need direct sunlight?
Carrots need at least six hours of direct sunlight per day. These plants are tolerant of partial shade. Carrot plants can survive on as little as three to four hours if necessary. However, you'll get more success with more sunlight.
Despite their shade tolerance, you should still try to give your carrot as much sun as possible. Consider giving your sun bright, unfiltered sun for the morning hours and then giving them dappled shade in the afternoon.
Want a garden full of plants that can grow in the shade? Check out "12 Yummy Vegetables That Can Grow In Shade" for some great information!
Picking a good fertilizer is crucial for growing vegetables! With carrots, it's essential to choose a fertilizer low in nitrogen and higher in phosphorous and potassium. These nutrients are vital in creating a healthy root system which is important for carrots!
Prefer to grow your food indoors? Check out "How To Grow Carrots Indoors [A Beginner's Guide]" for must-know information!