Saturday, September 20, 2014

Storing beets and carrots for seed

I've been planning on storing some carrots and beets over the winter in order to try and grow some seed next year. Last year I tried to overwinter them in the ground but they rotted (leaving curious cylindrical holes in the garden).

This year I'm going to try storing them in the basement in damp sand. I selected a bunch of golden beets as well as some yellow stone carrots. Since I was short on golden beets, I decided to also throw in some other beets to see if different types stored differently.

The trick seems to be using big, clean veggies, cutting off the greenery and then packing them in damp (but not wet) sand so they don't touch. Big was no problem. The Yellowstone carrots often grow to 10 inches or more (like the one above).

I put a bit of sand in the bottom, plunked them in, filled with more sand and done. I fit about 17 really big carrots in which should be enough to get at least one batch of decent seed next year. I layered the beets. Two 12 litres (2.5 gallon) pails needed almost 50lbs of sand for fill. I'll try to remember to report the results come spring.

I also racked off both carboys of cider to let them bulk age. The one sweetened with honey had a much longer ferment than the one sweetened with white sugar. If I have the gas, I'll start cleaning up the yard and putting some lyme and bone meal in the beds this afternoon.


  1. I look forward to the results of your experiment. I had no idea how to get seeds from root veggies.

  2. Hopefully this will work. We'll see come spring!