Back in April, I started a patch of carrots with what I described as a “cornucopia of many varieties of carrot seed”, with the conviction that this measure would increase germination success rates:
This is how the patch looked like in early October:
It was definitely an improvement from last year’s (which had 0% germination!) but the tops looked thin, and, sure enough, the carrots were also thin and smallish:
I only bothered to pull out the largest tops, which yielded the harvest shown below. I was a little disappointed, but at least it looked like all the different varieties I sowed were represented in the bunch:
Then, a couple of days later, I saw these packages of rainbow carrots at the supermarket:
They looked very similar in size to mine, so I guess it was not only me having a harvest on the thin side this year.
Yesterday, I was clearing some garden beds in preparation for winter, and noticed that some of the carrot plants left behind had grown in my absence (I was in Mexico for a couple of weeks). In the photo below, left, the unkept patch; I started pulling the carrots, somewhat thicker than the previous harvest (photo below, centre, and top of this post). I did not have time to dig deep enough to finish pulling all of them, and thought it would be fine to continue the next day. Well, the photo below, right, shows the same spot this morning:
– “Sigh” – I guess I should not be surprised, after all, daylight saving time is over; the weather forecast says that, on a couple of days, I will have one more chance to finish the harvest and then, the end of the growing season in my backyard will be official.
Small harvest and all, homegrown carrots are just the crunchiest, juiciest and most flavourful roots ever, and the best way to enjoy them is snacking on them the Mexican way, just washed and sliced (peeling is optional for organic carrots), with a generous splash of lime juice and a sprinkle of chili powder and salt:
What a colourful platter! All the carrots were delicious, and definitely worth growing at home. I hope to have even better luck next year.
As I have mentioned before, “chili powder” in the USA is often a blend of powdered dried hot peppers and spices, usually to season ground beef stews so, for sprinkling over veggies as above, I prefer to either use plain powdered dried peppers (such as cayenne) with salt, or a Mexican prepared mix, like Tajín™ Classic: