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dug up some carrots on Monday first time for a couple weeks and found a problem , so took a picture , wondered what the problem was , hope somebody can help ?


No expert

I'd have to agree with Bob. Nasty little critters! Got them here as well.



Can be avoided by placing a 2ft high plastic barrier around your carrot bed or grow in a 2ft high raised bed.

Or covering with I do 


Covering with fleece works every time for me. Good luck next time.

I'd definitely go with the fleece / mesh protection. I know carrot fly are supposed to fly below 45 - 60 cm but my raised beds are higher than this & I still have a problem with this pest - mesh is the only thing that works for me.

Thinning out seedlings can exacerbate the problem as the smell attracts the flies. Best, therefore, to always sow very thinly.

I grow groups of chives round mine but never had it, dad reckons she cant fly this high above sea level. I dont know if he's having me on, but in all the years he's grown them the fly has never struck.

Hello all thanks for the info , never had carrot fly before , must have attracted the blighters when dug some up before because thre carrots where fine

Never thin out and have in the past sown between Garlic 

You live and learn with gardening 

Not sure carrot flies have read,the script.  So 70 cm, 80 cm or 90cm?   

I have pretty good conditions for growing carrots...sandy loam......and always use onions and spring onions as companion planting.  By the way, parsley too gets carrot fly so same cultural requirements.  My veg patch has a mixed low evergreen hedge to one side, a lavendar hedge on another, and runner bean framework to another.  Also enough taller growing plants to,,in theory, deny the carrot fly.  however, I need to apply fleece to effectively deny carrot fly.

pests will get access one way or another such is their instinct to feed, breed and survive.  


hee hee hee 

Dig up the carrot bed yesterday all got the fly 

I have another bed in a big box , will have to see if they got it as well , ever hopeful

will use fleece and buy some insert netting for next year 

once again thanks for the advise 

Steve 309

The traditional remedy is to surround the carrots with string soaked in paraffin.  Never tried that.  If you do thin, either do it on a wet day or water afterwards to damp down the smell and settle the soil.  Anything to stop the lovely carroty smell getting out.  But I think fleece is the best answer.  Or do what my mum does and grow them in containers on her first-floor balcony.


What is the best way to store carrots for the winter without leaving them in the ground?

I found a web article that said leave them in there, covered in straw and horticultural sheeting. So did.

Dug some up yesterday and it looks like I have the same problem as GWRS. Still have loads of them in the ground too.

A neighbour once soaked rags with creosote and posted them as mini flags all over his garden.  "to deter badgers, rabbits and foxes" he said.  

The smell.  And the appearance.  And it didn't deter these creatures. 



Mel M

For the past two years all my carrots have had carrot fly attacks, even the ones grown in containers atop an outside work bench [especially the purple carrots.] This year I surrounded them with a 1 mtr high Vegimesh fence fixed to canes and the carrots were perfect.

The advantage I find with a fence, over mesh being laid over the carrots, is that you do not have to uncover the carrots to weed with an onion hoe or when thinning them out. But then I am rather tall with a long reach !

Vegimesh is quite expensive, so for a larger plot next year I am going to use the heavyweight fleece I have used this year to cover my cabbage. It really is very strong compared to the lightweight version which I find a waste of space.

MelM , heavy weigh fleece , never herd of it ? Wondered where you got it ?

You are quite right the lightweight stuff does just disintegrate 

Mel M

Hi GWRS.  I get mine from I comes under 'Frost Protection' and is 30gm as apposed to the usual 17gm. It is even machine washable.

Gemma....storing carrots in boxes of dry sand or soil used to be the way to do it I think.  Similar to "clamping" other root veg but on a domestic scale.  Ask Dove as she will know I think


Ta phillippa, I got a copy of John Seymour's complete book on self-sufficiency in the post today, not read it in years but I think that covers clamping. If not I'll ask Dove what to do.