Monday, July 23, 2012
Saturday, July 14, 2012
|Harvested Carrots in a Pot|
|Carrot seeds in a dry, well-ventilated place|
|Some Carrot Processing Material.|
|Combing Seed out of the stalk works pretty well|
Carrot seeds are very hairy. The first time I harvested carrot seeds I didn’t worry about the small hair. However, when planting the seed, the hair can make the seeds difficult to handle. They tend to cling to each other which tends to waste seed.
|Hairy seeds tend to stick together|
|Seperating the hairs from the seed via rubbing through a screen|
|My lovely picture demonstrates my method for winnowing seed|
|Finished Carrot Seed|
Though I usually have a lot of good to say about the veggies I grow I had mixed emotions when I recently harvested my tepary beans. These beans were obtained through the Pima County’s Seed Library. The package they were in was only labeled only as “tepary beans grown in Tucson” and had no reference to what particular cultivar of tepary bean they were. Their bushing habit would definitely enable them to support each other if grown in an open area.
|Tepary Bean Plant with small flowers|
|Tepary Bean pods do not work well as a snap bean|
Of all the carrots I have grown so far I enjoy growing the variety Purple Dragon the most. The flavor is mostly like a conventional carrot with a bit of a kick. The kick I am referring to is not spiciness, but rather a different flavor than a conventional carrot. Purple Dragon carrots are perfect for snacking and - most importantly - my children love them.
|I used to leave the fuzz on the carrot seeds|
|Small Carrots require thinning if one would like large roots|
|Later thinning includes snack-sized carrots|
|At last, the larger carrots are great for lunches|
|Most carrots have orange flesh, though you can select for darker flesh|
|Carrot Plants Bolting|
As the carrot plant grows out a main stem the carrot root becomes dry and woody. At this time the gardener can choose to pull the carrot out for compost or grow the plant out to seed. The carrot flowers attract beneficial insects from miles around including small wasps, bees, ladybugs, lacewings, etc. The area around the flowers literally becomes buzzing with activity.
|After a while, the seed begins to form on the flower heads|
|The dried seed heads are now ready for harvest|
|Harvested Purple dragon Carrot seed now ready to plant|