Carrots and onions...two questions!

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by MoonShine, Apr 24, 2006.

  1. MoonShine

    MoonShine Fire On The Mountain

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    Two questions for the gardening experts here :)

    Ever heard of potato onions? My Grandpa used to raise them. Planted them in the summer(I think) and left them in the ground all winter. Then in the early spring,you harvest them.
    I've called everywhere I can think of,and none of the places have heard of these onions. I'm wondering if they have another name?

    And...

    I've had some problems raising carrots in the past. I read in a seed catalog that people should place boards over the carrot rows. Said something about the boards would keep the ground from hardening. I thought about it and that very well could have been the problem. The top layer of soil does get hard when the temps get hot. It said to check under the boards often and to remove them at the first sign of the carrots popping up. Just curious if anyone else has used this or any other methods for raising carrots.

    Thanks alot! :baby04:
     
  2. Paquebot

    Paquebot Well-Known Member

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    Potato onions are potato onions! Some may call them multipliers or nesting onions but that applies to all types which multiply by root division. Supposedly common from TN on southward but has problems wintering over in the North. (I lost mine several times before giving up!)

    I was using the board method for carrots long before it was popular. The board is to keep the soil moist. It also works well with beets, chard, and parsnips. Unless the air is really hot and dry, one should need only soak the row down once and then the board put in place.

    Martin
     

  3. WannabeeFree

    WannabeeFree Well-Known Member

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    Martin,
    Could you tell me more about the board technique or any other carrot raising tips? I've never heard of using a board. I tried growing carrots a few times, but I just don't know what I'm doing. (I'm in Northern Illinois.)
    Thanks!
     
  4. Paquebot

    Paquebot Well-Known Member

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    The problem with carrots, and parsnips, is that germination time may be 2 full weeks or longer. That means that the soil must be almost uniformly damp from day 1 to day 14. Miss one day right in the middle of that, when the sun is boiling hot, and the seeds are cooked. Soil moisture is constantly escaping by moving up. When it reaches the surface, it evaporates. That process is stopped if there is something there which does not allow that moisture to get into the air. Pick up a board which has laid on the ground for some time and the soil is moist. That's how it works. I use 6" boards from old pallets, between 3 and 4 feet. After the seeds are planted, the row is soaked real good. Then the boards are laid down on the row. After a week or so, I'll start looking under them to see what's happening. When I finally see a row of nearly white seedlings, the boards are removed and become something to walk on between the rows.

    Another way is to take burlap sacks and cut them into 6" strips to lay over the rows. The burlap will hold moisture to help germination while needing some additional water. However, if the seedlings come up through the burlap, the seedlings are often uprooted when the material is removed. If left in place, it may not all rot in one season and be a tilling problem the next spring.

    Martin
     
  5. Jillis

    Jillis Well-Known Member

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  6. WisJim

    WisJim Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Regarding carrots, I remember reading that every time the soil dries out before the seeds are up you lose half your carrots.

    We use old sheets over our carrot beds. We always plant carrots and onions in wide rows or beds 3 to 4 feet wide, with the seeds or plants evenly distributed. Saves lots of weeding over planting them in narrow rows.
     
  7. Calfkeeper

    Calfkeeper Chief Bottle Washer

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    Ahhh.... A million thanks for the board on the carrots trick. I think that is EXACTLY what happened to me this year. I couldn't figure out why the heck my carrots hadn't germinated. It's because we had 90 degree weather the day after I planted them. It must have cooked the seeds.

    I will go looking for boards.

    CK
     
  8. MoonShine

    MoonShine Fire On The Mountain

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    Thank you so much!
    And,Jillis,thanks for the link!

    :) :) :)
     
  9. WannabeeFree

    WannabeeFree Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for the information. I picked up carrot seeds to try this year. Wish me well!
     
  10. dcross

    dcross Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I plant radishes and carrots together, just scatter the carrot seed on top of the ground. When you're picking radishes, the carrots are just getting started. If I'm losing half, that still leaves them too crowded:)
     
  11. jnap31

    jnap31 garden guy

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    I got a lot of potatoe onions for my wife to plant back in march 5lb postage paid from Ronnenigers. I have high hopes for them she says they are growing good your suppose to plant them in oct/nov or march/april My great grandpa use to have them in carter county KY
    http://www.ronnigers.com/