Monday, April 25, 2011

Carrot and Cucurbit

We never grow enough carrots. Rayyan eat most of our carrot harvest. Making sure that we have some carrot for Rayyan every week, I have to try to sow carrot seeds every month. Growing carrot during summer here in Adelaide is a bit challenging as the temperature is high and good germination will be a problem. Furthermore, the harsh burning rays of Adelaide summer sun can burn the leaves to crisp. I found that 'New Red Kuroda' carrot variety can tolerate heat (good and fast germination) which is reliable for growing carrot in summer. Carrot takes a long time to grow and space is very precious in our garden so I have to think of  a way I can give some shade to protect carrot from getting itself cooked in the soil and of course space vacancy. While we tested growing cucumber in container, there were a lot of empty spaces so we decided to sow some carrot seeds and see whether carrot and cucumber can grow happily together or not. YES they do!
Cucumber yied were good and carrot size were not too bad either.
Carrot thinnings.
Rarely have the chance to take photo of our carrots because it goes directly to the cooking pot for Rayyan meal.

This is what happened to the carrots growing together with bitter gourd after several days of 40+ degree Celsius. Bitter gourd foliage gave some shade protection for the carrots. Imagine if carrot were totally at the mercy of the sun, surely they will die.
Carrot which we sowed in the middle of last summer, growing together with watermelon.

I think carrot might give some contribution to this companionship too, help break the soil for cucumber shallow root system? To an oberver like me, a win-win situation.



20 comments:

takaeko said...

Carrots are challenging to me, too. Actually, I failed to glow them at my first try last summer because of a germination problem. Germinating carrots is difficult and most important process so I'll try some sun-shade to avoid burning sunlight in Osaka.

Katrina said...

Nice carrots! It's nice to hear Rayyan likes carrots that much!

Green Lane Allotments said...

Not a problem we have we carrots - our problem is keeping the carrot fly off them. You certainly seem to have succeeded with your methods for hot climate carrot growing though and who can beat a freshly pulled carrot - well worth the effort.

Cat-from-Sydney said...

Oooh....carrots + cucumber + whatever green + capsicum + mushrooms...aaahhhh....perfect salad for me. With a little bit salt and pepper, onions, olive oil, vinegar..... I miss Sydney and the cheap vegies and Mama's garden! We have to re-start here but it's too hot for everything. purrr....meow!

Bom said...

Did I understand you correctly? You were able to grow carrots in containers? If yes, I would appreciate any tips. I would love to grow our food as you do but I do not have any ground, much less any space and will have to resort to pots.

cina said...

Morning Diane
Thanks for your wishes though I did not published it :) I still visit your blog, bangchik, Steph and Malar's cuz I am still gardening and you all are still doing great stuff.

cinafong

Malar said...

I love to see your carrot! I never have successful story with carrot. It never germinate!

One said...

Lovely carrots! Have you seen Milka's lately? LOL! I am sure she won't mind if she read my comment. I haven't grown any carrots as I have impenetrable ground. Just to sidetrack, how do you obtain cabbage seeds? I always purchase them. I haven't seen my cabbage flower before. Spinach is easy.

milka said...

At 40 degree celsius your carrots can still grow so big and healthy. Don't know if the carrot leaves can be eaten? Although i didn't get any carrot last time but i really like the foliage's sweet smell. Will definitely try my luck again.

Wendy said...

wow, those are beautiful. No wonder your son loves those carrots! Smart to grow them in the slightly shaded area!

Mark Willis said...

I have big problems with growing carrots. The carrot root fly always get them despite the precautions I take. This year I have only sown a few seeds in an old plastic washing-up bowl, and I hope they will mature quickly, before the carrot flies notice them!

Mrs Bok - The Bok Flock said...

Fantastic carrots! Good companion planting I think. I still haven't had a lot of success because of the naughty chickens!!!! But I'll try again...and cover them properly!

Bangchik and Kakdah said...

I might consider growing carrots next... probably closer to the end of the year, when weather is cooler and wet. Now too hot... carrots and cocurbit sound like a great companionship, so carrots dig and fluff the soil for cocurbit "yang sangat manja"....

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Takaeko~ It is a bit challenging to get them germinate on hot weather. I wonder if you can obtain Kuroda carrot seeds much easily in Japan or not.

Katrina~ Thanks your carrot looks perfectly good.

Sue~ I wish I can grow big carrot like yours. Since we don't have enough, we usually harvest them when in still baby size for the baby in our house.

Cat-from-Sydney~ You have ther perfect weather for cucumber and capsicum to grow now in your new home.

Bom~ You only need deep containers to grow carrot. The good side of growing carrot in container that you have good straight shape of root since they won't be stop by stones. Avoid over-fertilise carrot as they give you nice leafy growth but not roots.

Cina~ I am always impress with your collection of herb and plants which people rarely grow and learn the medicinal properties it have.

Malar~ If your ground is hard to penerate, try growing them in your round pots just to test. Must be careful not to sow carrot seeds to deep.

Kwee Peng~ I have seen Milka lovely carrots. Collecting cabbage seeds needs patience, one plant will give you at least an acre worth of cabbage. I have never let my cabbage run to seeds, but I let my broccoli flower. I think just let them grow longer after they have grow head until they flower. It might take a while. The leceh thing about collecting cabbage/brassica seeds is to make sure no cross-pollination.

Milka~ Have you tried sowing dragon carrot seeds? Not sure whether you can eat carrot leaves.

Wendy~ Our plants don't do well in full sun in summer.

Mark~I read that carrot fly don't fly high. It is safer to grow carrots in container or high place to avoid carrotfly which have been suggested in most gardening book.

Mrs Bok~Naught chickens but they gave you many fresh eggs;-). I have problem snail or slug like to eat new pop carrot seedlings.

Bangchik and Kakdah~Sounds like a good idea growing carrot as the monsoon season getting near.

shaz said...

Carrots are about the only things I can grow well! I chuck them in and they seem to do ok (provided they don't get eaten by all my feral pests first). Maybe it's the weather thing, Sydney is pretty temperate. You told me you wished for rain, guess what, we have been so wet and soggy, mushrooms have sprouted all over my garden! Different varieties too but I don't know if any are at all edible and won't be brave enough to try :)

~Holly~ said...

I thought I posted a comment but it may have been swallowed up by blogger cyberspace!

Last year was my first year with carrots. My first batch did spectacularly. Second batch, not so much. I'm hoping for much success this year. I can see why Rayyan loves them. There's nothing like a fresh baby carrot grown at home!!

I was going to ask you about the purple mustard greens. How do you use them? I bought some seeds because they sounded good but didn't really think of how to use them. Fresh in a salad or in a soup?

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Shaz~Kind of cute when imagining your feral pest harvesting carrot as surely they have to pull it out. Won't be cute if they steal too much though.

Holly~Our purple mustard are still tiny seedlings as it is our first time growing them. I am not brave enough yet to eat them fresh in salad. I thought of trying the mustard with stir-fry and a little bit of oyster sauce to see how it taste. Before trying it with other preparation. Soup sounds great though.

Hughbert said...

I'm still catching up with old posts because I was away for a week. Great tip about the Red Kurota thanks, I haven't heard of that one before. Actually my one success with carrots resulted in rather misshapen creatures so I have to try harder! Where do you get that variety from? Do they do well in the cool season too, or do you use other varieties then?

Your results growing carrots with shallow rooted crops are good to see. There is lots of literature about this sort of root space partitioning, basically planting deeper rooted species with shallow root so they do not compete. Other examples are planting deep rooted perennials like Yarrow and Comfrey under shallow-rooted fruit trees like citrus, apples, stone fruit etc.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Hughbert~ I bought the Red Kuroda seeds from online Eden Seeds. I have not tried yet with winter for Red Kuroda. Misshapen but home grown still taste better than perfect carrots in shop. I usually not worried about giving carrots manure, compost of fertiliser as it cause the roots to be misshapen and lush leaves not roots.

Anonymous said...

may i knw where did u get the carrots seeds? i couldnt seem to find it here in my area here. im from klang, selangor.