~ BEETROOT Seed ~
Although white beetroot have been known since at least Roman times, this is an improved modern variety for small gardeners, and dual-purpose - the succulent green leaves have been bred for use as leaf beet or chard. We often pick the beet in the morning, cook the leaves at lunch, & eat the root for dinner.
White beetroot. Leaves also particularly good to eat
Order BtWH - 100 seed £1.60
Large conical roots, with intense red flesh, very juicy and sweet. This special strain from Italy is the most productive red beetroot we have found. Tender even when huge!
Very large conical roots. Tender, no woodiness. Deep red.
Order BtSA - 150 seed £1.50
"Sanguina beetroot is tops!! germinated really well and is installed all over the garden." - Lexie Munro
~ CARROT Seeds ~
Carrot VERY FAT
They are a good orange colour throughout, including the core, with a good flavour and medium-sweet taste. Early in the season they are long and thin much like any other orange carrot, but later they get incredibly fat, with a unique conical shape.
We included it in our carrot trials for the first time in 2003, and in the end because it makes such very fat roots, it gave one of the highest yields of the lot!
Traditional carrot from France. High yielding with good flavour
Order CtDE - About 300 seed £1.30
'Giant Red' Dark Orange Carrot
The flesh is sweet without bitterness, while still retaining a good 'carrotty' flavour, and the core is much reduced. We will definitely be keeping this one in the future, while selecting for a redder colour.
Quick, large table carrot . Young specimen in photo doesn't do it credit - they get bigger!
Order CtGR - About 350 seed £1.35
'Jaune Obtuse de Doubs' Yellow Carrot
Most people don't realise that orange carrots are a modern invention. Carrots naturally come in a range of colours - white and yellow from Europe, and purple from the Middle East where agriculture originated about 11000 years ago. (The orange ones are actually a recent cross between the groups in the past couple of hundred years. )
Anyways, the point is that yellow is a perfectly sensible colour for a carrot! This old traditional French variety has yellow roots with blunt ("obtuse") tips that are easy to dig up with no risk of snapping, and a good strong (but sweet) carrot taste.
Yellow carrots look great sliced or grated in salads, and they stay yellow when cooked.
Traditional yellow carrot , good flavour.
Order CtJO - about 350 seed £1.35
Note: This is a great old variety but over the years has started to depart from its original description. We are looking for someone to take this on as a project, to reselect for a brighter yellow colour and more typically rounded-tip root shape. It shouldn't be too big a task - you'll need to grow about 120 carrots and keep the best 60 of them for seed the following year. If you are interested in joining our growers network, please do get in touch!
'Blanc a Collet Vert' White & Green Carrot
The long root is white, and the top inch or so sticks up out of the soil, turning green.
It's a nice carrot, and always popular with Historical re-enactment societies (They have to have white carrots in their soup before the battles, for true authenticity!)
White, green tops, long and pointy. Needs good spacing for best results.
Order CtBC - about 350 seed £0.99
' Lisse de Meaux' Long Carrot - SWEET , GOOD FOR STORAGE OVERWINTER
New last year, a medium long orange carrot with rounded tips. We like the flesh which is particularly sweet, and gets sweeter after lifting.
It is a late-season carrot, best planted for a maincrop, and we chose it for its very long-keeping qualities once harvested.
Good keeper, maincrop
Order CtLM - about 350 seed £1.30
Saving Carrot Seed:
Carrot seed is fairly easy, provided you don't have
any wild carrot (Queen Anne's Lace') growing nearby.
Carrots flower in their second year, so you need to
dig up your carrots in Autumn.
Make sure you choose ones that are true-to-type: right colour, shape & size. You can even test the taste by slicing off the tip!
If your area has cold winters, store them in sand or
sawdust in a cool but frost-free place, and plant out in spring.
You can plant them quite close together, so 40 needn't
take up much space.
The next summer they will flower (to about 5 foot high!)
... and seed is ready in autumn. Just rub the seed
off when it is mostly brown.
Basic seed-saving instructions are included with your seeds, so you can do this yourself.
There are more detailed home-seed saving guides (printable) over to the left of this page,
in the box titled 'SeedSaving', with sheets on drying and storing your seed too.
And of course, seed-saving is only possible because these are all real, non-hybrid varieties.