I bought lots of plants with me when I left the farm to their new location in Katoomba. Chives, radish, shallot, onion, garlic, mustard, horseradish, red veined beet leaves, lemon balm, artichoke and of course the amazing orange inside, blood outside carrot.
It amazes me how hard it is to grow a good carrot. My offerings to date have been tasty but generally something only a mother would love…forked and not like the perfect ones we are use to seeing for $2 a kilo in the shops. Regardless, I planted my precious blood carrots I’d raised from seed at the farm so that I could get seeds for planting and try again in the sandy soil of my new locale.
What delighted me most about the heritage blood carrot was how pretty it was when it burst into flower in late spring. The flowers were a lovely burgundy pink shade and made a very nice feature in the new bed. Ordinary carrots have white flowers that look a bit like road side weeds, but the blood carrot even got my garden buff neighbour asking what it was. I teamed up the lacy carrot flowers with this gorgeous Oriental Poppy which flowered at the same time.
The blood carrot can be finely sliced and the rounds used as the base for some canapés, with piped cream cheese and a sprig of something pretty to top it off. Carrot flowers are edible, so you could even use a little carrot florette.
I never got around to harvesting the seed, but only had time to cut the fronds and let them lie on the ground in the hope that this year they would come up by themselves. So far it’s not looking good, so I’ve managed to track down some more seed and plan to grow them in my self watering garden boxes. This should be an ideal environment to grow long straight carrots perfectly so I can finally feel the satisfaction of growing a beautiful and tasty carrot.