Growing carrots and other root vegetables in Houston are one of the best winter gardening opportunities, and these yummy veggies are pretty good for you. I’ll offer you information that has helped me with growing winter root crops.
Radishes are so excellent for gardening with kiddos. They grow so quickly that your tiny gardener will stay focused.
Seeds are efficient: more often than not, it is better to grow from seeds with root vegetables. This allows the roots to grow in the same spot undisturbed and permits the deeper tap roots to mine minerals more quickly. Seeds are easy to distribute, and if you are careful and use new sources, you can avoid the dreaded thinning process.
Southern Sunshine—select a full-sun location. These root vegetables need lots and lots of sun, especially on our shorter winter days. In Houston winter, we get sun from the southerly direction; keep that in mind when you plant near taller vegetables. It lets these beets and carrots take the south position.
Bed Prep = Success. Seed to soil contact is the key to starting root crops. Always pull back mulch or, better yet, put down new high-quality compost; Nature’s Way or Landscapers Pride would work. Remember that better soil means better roots. Sometimes a loosening of the soil can make better roots as well. Gardeners increase their success rate by growing their root crops in a raised bed, especially in areas with heavy clay soil. Definitely water before you plant that can help a lot with early growth, seed, or transplant
Underrating Mulch. Using a thin layer of leaves or pine straw can keep the soil moist and loose. This ideal strategy provides more extensive roots for harvest.
Thinning is hard to avoid altogether, even if you were careful when you were planting. I like to have a bowl of clean water when I thin. That lets me rinse my newly thinned plant babies and use them as a microgreen. Consisting watering during root vegetables’ life span is vital for more significant and deeper roots. Also, watering when the seeds are maturing will be essential for crunch and flavor. Luckily our Houston wet winter helps us out in this area.
Eat your root crops raw in salads or yummy wintery soups. Either way, we can get a lot of produce for our effort with these crops. Turnips alone are considered the most productive veggie per square foot. Often the greens are usable, too, especially beets and turnips. Carrot and radish greens are excellent as herbs or even pizza toppings!
Beets – Chioggia, Bull’s Blood, Golden
Carrots – Scarlett Nantes, Danves
Radishes – French Breakfast, Champion, Cherry Belle