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Find out how to grow carrots in containers the easy way, especially if you only have a balcony or other small space. Perfect homegrown veggie for city dwellers!

It’s perfect for beginners and gardening pros. It lets you beat problems like pests and bad soil. Plus, you get fresh carrots anytime.

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Did you know… ?

Carrots were initially cultivated for medicinal purposes rather than for consumption as food.

The ancient Greeks and Romans used them as a medicinal herb rather than a vegetable, mainly for their aromatic leaves and seeds.

It wasn’t until the Middle Ages that orange carrots, the most common color today, were developed by Dutch growers in honor of the House of Orange, thus the name “orange” carrots.

Tips for Growing Carrots in Containers

CONTAINER:        At least 12 inches deep
MATERIAL:           Any non-porous material
SUN/ SHADE:      At least 6 hours of direct sun per day
HARVEST TIME:  60 – 80 days after sowing

Sowing the Carrot Seeds

First, use a stick, or even your finger, and make little trenches in the soil.

Carrot seeds are tiny but there are a few tricks to sowing them:

1. One great tip is to mix the seeds in a small bowl with some river sand. Then sprinkle this into the rows that you have made.
2. Use seed tape – this is biodegradable tape that has the seeds spaced out evenly. Just lay out a strip of tape in your trench and cover with soil.
3. Just carefully sow the seeds by hand, leaving an inch apart.

Carrots can take up to three weeks to germinate – keep the seeds consistently moist until the seedlings appear, even if this means watering them every day.

Carrots do like cooler weather so don’t sow them in the hotter summer months. For a consistent supply, sow more carrots every 3 – 4 weeks. 

The Best Type of Soil for Carrot Plants

Carrots grow best in well-draining, loose soil that is rich in organic matter to provide the plant with what it needs. The soil should also be slightly acidic, so have a pH of around 6.0 and 6.8.

Carrots love a light, sandy loam soil that’s not packed tightly together as they need the space to grow. Use a mix made for veggies or make your own quite easily by mixing together organic compost, soil and ether coco coir, or vermiculite. The organic matter used here will help to provide the veggies what they need. Try and make sure there aren’t any rocks or things in the soil which will cause the carrots to grow into funky shapes.

Poorly draining soil can lead to a variety of problems, including root rot and other diseases.

Nutrients that Carrot Plants Need

Carrots need a variety of nutrients to grow properly, including:

  • Nitrogen: This is an essential nutrient that helps with vegetative growth, such as the development of leaves and stems.


  • Phosphorus: This nutrient is important for root development, flowering, and fruiting.


  • Potassium: This nutrient helps with overall plant health and disease resistance. It is also important for root development and the production of sugars and starches.


  • Calcium: This nutrient is important for cell division and the development of a strong root system.


  • Magnesium: This nutrient is necessary for the production of chlorophyll, which is important for photosynthesis.


  • Sulfur: This nutrient is necessary for the production of proteins and enzymes.
Banner saying to select correct fertilizer for carrots

The correct ratio of nutrients for carrots

In addition to these essential nutrients, carrots also require trace amounts of other minerals, including boron, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, and zinc.

The specific ratio of nutrients that carrots need will depend on the soil conditions and the specific cultivar of carrot being grown. In general, however, carrots require a well-balanced supply of nutrients, with a slightly higher ratio of phosphorus and potassium compared to nitrogen.

A good starting point for fertilizing carrots is to use a natural fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 5:10:5 or 6:12:6, which means that the amounts of phosphorous are slightly higher than the nitrogen and potassium.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that the actual nutrient needs of your carrot plants will vary slightly, depending on the specific soil and growing conditions.

Provide Adequate Watering

Watering your carrots right is key. The soil should be moist but not too wet. Water deeply when the top soil is dry. Use a watering can with a gentle nozzle to keep the seeds safe.

Ways to Preserve Carrots

If you grow an abundance of carrots, you might not be able to cook them and eat them as fast as you thought you would, but there are other way that you can store them to eat or use later.

Here are some ideas, as well as a couple of quick, easy recipes you can whip up after a long day:

  1. Dehydrated carrots
  2. Quick & easy pickled carrots
  3. Fresh carrot, ginger, apple juice
  4. Carrot powder
  5. Carrot noodles


How can I manage pests when growing carrots in containers?

Use row covers or fine mesh to keep pests like aphids away. Also, keep weeds away from your containers. Weeds can bring more pests.

Can I companion plant other vegetables with carrots in containers?

Carrots get along with lettuce, radishes, chives, and onions. These friends can keep pests away or give carrots shade and wind protection.

Are there any organic practices I should follow for container gardening with carrots?

Definitely! Use organic soil, compost, and fertilizers. Avoid chemicals. Use natural pest control like handpicking pests or insecticidal soap.

How can I practice sustainable gardening with container-grown carrots?

Try using recycled containers. Collect rainwater for watering. Compost kitchen scraps for fertilizer. Choose heirloom carrot varieties for biodiversity.