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Carrot germination

I have just re-sown carrots as my original sowing 3 weeks ago has failed to produce a single seedling.  I waited my original sowing until the soil temperature was 10°C but on subsequent research it seems carrots require a higher temperature, around 13° to germinate?  The seed packet does not indicate this. 
I am keeping my fingers crossed for better luck this time.


  • Jenny_AsterJenny_Aster Posts: 936
    edited May 2023
    Had the same problem, even though I sowed the seeds in containers.

    Last week I placed seeds on a wet tissue inside a clear plastic food box, the type a Chinese takeaway would use (at least our local one does). The food box with the lid on was placed on my East facing kitchen window.

    In just 3 days the seeds germinated. The following day (Last Sunday 21st May) the tissue with the chitted seeds on top was gently placed on top of the watered container, quite a few of the seed/lings were picked up with the pointed end of a plant label to spread them out. All was covered with a fine covering of compost and kept watered.

    Noticed this morning (2 days later) some of the containers have seedlings with two seed leaves showing. So I'm feeling I've caught up somewhat.

    Think I'll always sow them this way, as well as lettuce and other 'awkward' plants.

    Here's a pick of the germinated seeds.

    Trying to be the person my dog thinks I am! 

    Cambridgeshire/Norfolk border.
  • KeenOnGreenKeenOnGreen Posts: 1,831
    We usually have to do 3 sewings at our allotment each year, before they germinate en masse, and neighbouring plot holders usually report the same problem.

    If you have really well drained, sandy soil, then they will probably germinate more quickly. If like most of us, you have a bit everything (clay, etc), then I would sew additional batches, keep watered, and be patient. In the end we always find that they come up eventually.

    The weather/temperature has been all over the place this Spring, so we are finding that lots of things are taking longer to germinate than previous years.
  • that's why people plant radish between carrot rows.
    also why Remay Garden Cloth over carrot seed bed 
     it common here to warm the soil up just little bit
     more to increase germination. 
  • thevictorianthevictorian Posts: 1,245
    Carrots germination can be improved by covering the ground. A common allotment "hack" is to sow the seed and put a plank of wood/cardboard over the top. This keeps the moisture in and gives good results. The key thing is you need to remove the cover as soon as you see seedlings pop up as slugs love living under the cover.
    I sowed some in a container under a piece of glass in late febuary and got good results with 5 year old seed, so it can help.
  • bertrand-mabelbertrand-mabel Posts: 2,647
    For many years we haven't been able to germinate any variety of carrots outside. We didn't just sow once, we continued and in most caes used up 3 packets of seeds. Expensive! So one year we decided to sow in the polytunnel. Germination was slow but it happened. So now we sow always in the polytunnel and have great success. 2 rows are ready for harvesting now while 2 more rows are developing. Will sow some more soon.
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