This week we started our carrots, first time we have ever sown them.
They are a wee bit later than carrots would usually be ready.
But two things are the reason for that, one it was such a dry spell, the carrots just sat there, until the rain eventually arrived, then they shot on.
And secondly, I intentionally sowed them later than they would normally be sown.
Usually carrots get sown at the beginning of May, we waited till the start of June.
The reason behind this thought, was that the carrot fly is seemingly finished by June.
And the carrots do look like they have missed them, although time will tell.
Next year I will sow them at the beginning of May along with the Turnip and beetroot, but I will fleece them, along with the Turnips that we sow.
The turnips also get eaten by a flee, so they defiantly do need to be fleeced at the start.
At the moment we are picking the carrots by hand.
But we go through four hundred kilo of carrots a week, so that is a very lot of carrots, to be pulled by hand.
There are about 5 to 6 carrots for 1lb of weight, depending on size sometimes 4 carrots.
400 kilos of carrots are around 880 lbs so at say 5 carrots for a lb of weight, that is around about 4 thousand four hundred carrots to be hand pulled each week. Along with all the other harvesting.
I have been looking at machines for lifting them, even the second-hand ones were coming in at five thousand pounds.
So last week I made one.
We had an old-fashioned potato harvester that was dead, and ready for the scrap heap,
But it still had a good blade on the front, this blade is 72 inch long, the width of the beds we plant in, and about 1 foot wide, and is set at an angle.
So when you have this on the tractor, when it is lowered, it goes below the crop and the angle of the blade lifts the crop out of the ground, they still need to be hand lifted, but it is much easier.
This old machine used to get pulled along on wheels and hade a chain conveyer belt, these were all broken.
So I got the grinder out, and chopped it in half, only keeping the front frame and blade.
Now it couldn’t be pulled along, like it was back in the day.
So then I welded up frame, so we could pick it up with the tractor, sanded it down and painted it.
It is now ready to go to work, we will also use it for lifting the Onions and leeks, and it cost two grinding blades 10 welding rods and 4 hrs of my time.
Ill let you know next week if it works.