Pelleted carrot seed
Pellets can save time-consuming thinning for both home gardeners and commercial operations. They can be sown by hand or by using precision seeders. Our carrot pellets are size 11.5. Pellets have one major drawback: the process shortens the viable life of the seed. Buy only as much pelleted seed as you need for this season. It will not hold over well. Our pellets use an inert clay coating that is in compliance with NOP standards. At 1" spacing 100 pellets will sow about 8', 250 pellets around 20'. Keep pellets cool and dry prior to planting and maintain steady soil moisture during the germination period.
How to Succeed with Pelleted Carrot Seed
Incorrect use of pelleted seed negates the benefits its higher cost reflects. Success hinges upon being mindful of soil temps (ideally 65-75°) and maintaining proper soil moisture. All carrot seed, but especially pelleted seed, needs consistent moisture. A deep soaking after seeding helps saturate and break apart the clay pellet. After initial watering, it remains of utmost importance to keep soil from drying out.
Home gardeners: Hand sow pelleted seeds every 1". Lay wetted newspaper on top of the seed bed for 5-7 days to keep soil moist during emergence.
Commercial growers: Pelleted carrot seed is best used with a precision seeder. The pellets neatly fit into the singulation mechanisms of the seeder to drop one seed at a time to a set spacing. This minimizes labor-intensive thinning, giving commercial growers added control over this high-maintenance crop. If you don’t have a precision seeder, use raw carrot seed. Either way, cover beds with row cover (laid flat) for 5-7 days to keep soil moist until seeds sprout.
Culture: Very hardy. Early carrots can be sown by late April. For fall crop or winter storage, seed in early summer. Minimal germination temperature 40°, optimal range 75–85°. Can take up to 3 weeks to germinate; keep rows from drying out for faster emergence. Thinning is critical: At 3" high thin to ½" apart, at 6" thin again to 1-2" apart.
- ALTS: Alternaria Leaf Spot
- PM: Powdery Mildew
- BR: Black Rot
- TLS: Target Leaf Spot
- LR: Licorice Rot
- P: Pythium
ALTS shows up first on the oldest foliage as brown-black spots edged with yellow. Foliage blackens and shrivels as it develops and spreads. Maintaining a good crop rotation is the best preventive.
For the latest results of our germination tests, please see the germination page.