Carrots and Radishes

For Gulf Coast Gardeners, fall is a great time to plant. Lots of cool-weather plants will be transferred from small pots to the ground between now and mid-October. But some plants grow better straight from seed…and seed-sowing time is now.

Things that have long roots grow best from seed: carrots, radishes, and beets to name a few. Gardening expert Bill Finch has a few steps that will lead to a successful harvest later on. First, clear your well-mulched garden row down to bare earth; and second get the ground very wet BEFORE planting. Soaker hoses do a good job here. Too much watering after planting will wash the seeds away.

When planting carrots, for example, they need to be planted very close to the surface and yet they need a lot of water. By soaking the ground first, the carrots get the water they need. Make a little trough with your finger and sprinkle the seeds lightly along the trough. They don’t need to be covered with soil, but they do need to be covered or they’ll dry out.

Bill uses several covers, including frost cloth or store-bought netting and hoops. Both will keep bugs and birds away while keeping moisture in.

So don’t wait until spring! Plant now. If you need more info, call Bill’s radio show Sunday mornings from 9-11am on 106.5FM or email plaingardening@yahoo.com.

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