Carrot 'Mercado de Paris' - Seed
Carrot seed need not be prepared.Sowing method
Sow in the ground, preferably in full sun, from March to August. Loosen the soil to at least 30 cm deep. Prepare a groove 1 cm deep. Insert a stake at each end of the row and run a string between them. The carrot seeds are very fine, mix with a little sand and using your thumb and forefinger drop the seeds into the groove, try sowing as thinly as possible, at most 5 mm deep. With your fingers gently cover with the soil from the trench. Press the soil lightly and sprinkle with water. Remove the string and place a marker at the beginning of the row with the name of the variety. Recommended spacing between rows: 20 cm. From mid-January, sow seeds in boxes under glass. Fill the boxes with good fine seed compost, mix the seeds with some dry sand and spread them at regular intervals over the compost. Then cover the seeds with a layer of the compost (5 mm or less), lightly press the compost, sprinkle with water and cover with a glass. Place the boxes in the light, at room temperature. Once the seeds have germinated, remove the glass plate. Seeds germinate in 6-14 days. Approximately 2-3 weeks later, the seedlings can be thinned and planted out (about an inch apart). They must be planted with the root straight down. Do not wait too long before planting as the carrot has a tap root and when they are too long, they are more difficult to plant.
Carrots are orange which is the colour of the Netherlands ‘Royals’. In the 17th century, ships of the VOC brought back with them a purple carrot discovered in Iran. The Dutch market gardeners, very patriotic, multiplied trials, successfully, to give an orange colour in carrots. These are however, in various colours.Cooking Tips
Carrots store well for at least ten days in the refrigerator. You can also deep freeze them. They can be cooked with potatoes, but do not cook for too long as they are best when the roots remain firm. Cooked in a Wok, sliced carrots are delicious. They are also delicious eaten raw in salads and are packed with vitamins, minerals and carotene which is a good antioxidant! Clean your carrots under running water by scrubbing with a nail brush.
Provide no additional fertilizer to the roots to improve quality. Water more often during dry periods. Keep the plot weed free as this helps the roots to grow better.Harvesting method
The smell of slightly damaged carrots during harvesting attracts the carrot fly. To prevent damage to the harvest, harvest the entire row and not be tempted to pull a handful of carrots every few days. It is best to harvest with a fork. Simply place the fork along the plants and lift the earth to release the carrots. Summer carrots, harvest in the summer and winter carrots, you guessed it, in the winter!