Posted: 05/01/2014 at 14:35
Thanks E - it helps. I agree with Verdun 's advice which gives a good general overview. Root veg don't really do well in containers so that may be half of your problem. Try and select varieties which are bred for container growing - often called 'mini veg'. For carrots, these would be a 'stump rooted' variety as containers generally don't have the necessary depth for standard varieties, so suggest your raised beds for those. I would also suggest buying the best compost you can afford - a John Innes number 2 type would be good, or mix your own using bagged topsoil mixed with a good general multi-purpose compost and adding a little fish, blood and bone (don't over-do that though!) Doing that would provide more long-term nutrition than just using MP compost which generally has enough fertiliser to last for 6 weeks. Later in the season use your weak general liquid feed, much of which can be absorbed via the leaves, so wet those when watering it in. Little and often is the best way to use liquid types - those based on seaweed are good. Also use as large/deep containers as you can. If it helps, my root veg grown in the soil didn't do very well last year either although I usually have a great crop, so perhaps it was just a bad year for some crops - the cold, slow start to the year being mainly to blame I think.