History & Origin

The name "carrot" comes from the French word "carotte." Carrots originated in the Mediterranean. Around the first century, Greek doctors used carrots as a stomach tonic. They were used as food during the 13th century in Europe. The early colonists of Jamestown, Virginia brough them to American and Native Americans learned how to grow carrots.

When to Plant

Plant 2–3 weeks before the average date of the last 32°F freeze in the spring.

Be sure to check the frost free date in your area.

Spacing and Depth

Carrot Seedling

Plant seeds one-quarter to one-half inch deep with no more than 3 seeds for every inch. Space rows 12-18 inches apart. It may take two weeks for carrot seeds to come up.

Special Care

Dig up soil 8–9 inches deep. Break up hard clods in soil. Plant the round (Thumbelina) or short (Finger) carrots. Plant a radish seed every 6-12 inches to mark the carrot row. Radishes come up in a week and mark the row. This is a good example of intercropping two crops in the same row at the same time. Keep weeds out.


Pull carrots when the roots are at least 1/2 inch across.

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