Create an Instant Indoor Garden Using Carrot Tops

Next time you are chopping carrots for soup or making carrot sticks, don't throw out the tops. Plant them instead for a bright spot of green on your windowsill.

Here is an easy project that can bring a little greenery to your windowsill. Did you know that you can grow carrot tops in a pot?

Growing Carrot Tops

It may seem a bit strange to grow carrot tops in a container, but the leaves of carrots are quite attractive. They provide a welcome spot of green during the winter months, or when you don’t have access to a yard or garden.

I remember my mother showing me how to grow carrot tops when I was a little girl. Later, I grew them with my own daughters.

The process is very simple. You need a small container, potting mix and of course, carrots.

Step 1: Choosing Carrots

You want to select carrots that have some green showing at the top. Carrots sold separately are much more likely to have green on top than those packaged in bags.

Step 2: Trim the Carrots

Cut the carrot tops off at approximately 1 inch in length. Use the remainder for cooking or eat them raw. Have you ever tried purple carrots?

You can see that these carrot tops have some residual growth on top, which will make them more likely to sprout when planted.

Step 3: Plant Carrot Tops in a Container

Plant the carrot tops in your container filled with potting mix so that a little of the orange top peeks through.  Keep the soil moist, but not soggy. Be sure your container has a hole for drainage. Place the container by a sunny window. Check out perennial vegetables that grow back each year.

Step 4: Watch Them Grow

You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how quickly your carrot tops will begin growing.  The orange part of the carrot, will grow small root hairs that grown down into the soil.  Your carrot tops won’t form a new carrot, but they will flower and produce seeds.  If your carrots are hybrids, the carrots seeds won’t turn out the same as the original carrot, but you can certainly try planting them in your vegetable garden and see what kind of carrot comes up. Here’s your guide to vegetable harvest times.

Noelle Johnson
Noelle Johnson is a horticulturist and certified arborist who lives and gardens in the desert Southwest. When she is not writing or helping other people with their gardens, you can find her growing fruits and vegetables, and planting flowering shrubs and maybe a cactus or two.