CARROT (Daucus carota)
Plant Characteristics
Carrot belongs to the family Umbelliferae. It is a cool season root crop. It is rich in iron and vitamins like Thiamine, Riboflavin, Niacin, Ascorbic acid and Vitamin A.
Varieties
Pusa Kesar, Nantes, Pusa Meghali.
Seeds And Cultivation
Carrot can be grown in high ranges from August to January. Well-drained sandy loam soil is best suited for the crop.
Seed rate is 5-6 kg/ha. It is usually sown on ridges to facilitate good root production. Ridges of about 20 cm height are made 45 cm apart and seeds sown 10 cm apart on the rows. The seed is mixed with fine sand and sown in rows by hand and covered with soil to make it firm around it.
Uproot excess seedlings (thinning) three weeks after sowing leaving a plant to plant spacing of 10 cm to facilitate better tuber growth.
Water Management
It is necessary that enough soil moisture is available to help uniform seed germination and growth of plant. Because of the deep root forming nature, the crop requires continuous moisture in the soil.
Nutrient Management
Apply 25 t/ha FYM before sowing and a fertilizer dose of 37.5 kg N, 62.5 kg P2O5 and 50 kg K2O / ha as basal. Topdressing with 37.5 kg N / ha may be done one month after sowing.
Weed Management
Weeding should be done at regular intervals to keep down the weeds. Shallow hoeing is necessary to facilitate root growth. When the root starts growing, earthing up should be done.
Pest Management
Carrot fly, wireworm and aphids are the major pests causing damage to the crop. For control, soil treatment with insecticides such as Bromophos or Diazinon is recommended.
Disease Management
Cercospora leaf blight, Bacterial blight and softrot are the major diseases. For control of fungal diseases proper drainage should be provided. Hot water treatment of seeds at 50oCfor 15 minutes is also suggested as a prophylactic measure. Spraying of Indofil M-45 or Copper oxychloride @ 2.5 g per litre of water is also effective.
Harvesting
Harvesting is done 70-85 days after sowing.Light irrigation is provided just before harvest and the tubers are pulled out of soil without damage
AverageYield
20-25 tons per hectare.