I want you to think about what the weather is like 60 days before that first frost?For most of us August is one of the most brutal months of the summer. That means your newly planted seeds need a lot of extra attention!Every winter for the last 8 years we have had at least one cold frame full of this wonderful winter time treat!If you have never eaten a fresh harvested winter carrot then you have missed out on one of the sweetest garden treats there is!Well that strong carrot flavor almost completely disappears and is replaced with a very sweet yummy flavor! In fact it would be a travesty to cook them in my opinion.Elliot Coleman describes them as “Candy carrots” in his book Four-Season Harvest and that is a very good description. The key to growing carrots for winter harvest is to get them planted 60 days before your first frost!Other suggestions to help get those carrots germinated well include; adding a shade cloth over the bed or covering the entire bed with moist burlap until the seeds germinate.
I also think it is very important to cover your carrots with a cold frame or hoop house.I know everyone is busy at that time of year canning tomatoes and green beans but it is super important to your future carrot crop that you get out there and thin.If you don’t, your harvest will be full of smaller crowded carrots.Many people just cover the bed with straw or leaves but I think the cold frame just makes things so much easier.We love to cover our carrot patch with a cold frame.