12 Reasons Why Carrots Split When Growing

why do carrots split when growing
why do carrots split when growing

Carrots are loved by most. They are not only rich in nutrients, but they are also pretty great in taste. Carrots are used worldwide for cooking in different cuisines, such as salads and sides.

They are a healthy snack; growing them on your own would be even better.

If you are growing carrots, but they split while growing up, that can be pretty problematic.

Split carrots look odd, but the taste is different on these carrots too. They also might have a bitter taste that you will not like to have.

There can be several reasons behind this, and it’s best to know these. This will ensure that your carrots stay intact while you are growing them.

So, essential reasons that you will need to know about that can help you make it up for the carrots being split and to avoid them are:

Why Do Carrots Split When Growing? A List of Reasons and Solutions

  1. Soil Type

The soil type is one of the major reasons for the carrots to have split growth. These carrots might be growing divided if there is not enough moisture in the soil you are planting the carrots in.

Carrot roots require moist soil, which is essential to increasing healthier carrots.

potting soil

If your carrots are not growing perfectly and you end up with split carrots, you will have to check the soil moisture content and water them more to keep them moist.

Yet, the soil with more moisture would do perfectly for these carrots. That will help you out optimally as well to not have split-ended carrots.

  1. Rocks

Rocks, stones, and other debris in the soil can cause carrots to split when growing. This is because these objects can put pressure on the roots of the carrot plant, causing them to break or split.

Weeds can also cause carrots to split when growing. This is because weeds compete with the carrot plant for water and nutrients, which can cause the roots to become weak and break.

Diseases can also cause carrots to split when growing. Conditions can weaken the plant’s roots, making them more susceptible to breaking or splitting.

Carrots can also split when growing if they are not watered properly. This is because if the carrot plant does not have enough water, the roots will become weak and dry, which can cause them to break or split.

Carrots can also split when growing if they are harvested too early. This is because the roots of the carrot plant are not fully developed and can easily break or split.

average-sized rocks

Carrots can split when growing if not stored in an area too cold. This is because the roots of the carrot plant can become damaged when exposed to cold temperatures, which can cause them to break or split.

Not only that, but the soil’s pH level also affects the soil’s growth.

You need to ensure that the soil has a pH level between 5.5 to 6.5, and not only that, but the soil needs to be free of all sorts of rocks as well because they can cause the carrots to twist and twirl while they grow and you will end up having the split carrots that you don’t want.

  1. Prevent Nitrogen Exposure

Carrots are especially susceptible to splitting when they are exposed to excess nitrogen. This nutrient is essential for plant growth, but.

When roots are exposed to high nitrogen levels, they become large and fleshy but lacking in flavour. Excess nitrogen can also cause the roots to split.

To prevent this problem, make sure to fertilize your carrot plants properly. Use a low-nitrogen fertilizer or compost, and avoid over-fertilizing.

Apply fertilizer only when the plants are actively growing, and stop fertilizing a few weeks before harvest.

  1. Water Deeply but Infrequently


Another factor that can cause carrots to split is irregular watering. Carrots need a consistent moisture supply to grow correctly, but too much water can cause the roots to break.

When the soil is constantly wet, it puts pressure on the carrot roots and can cause them to crack.

To avoid this problem, water your carrot plants deeply but infrequently. Let the top inch or two of the soil dry out before watering again.

  1. Thin Carrot Seedlings

Carrots grown too close together are more likely to split when they mature. When carrot seedlings first grow, thin them, so they are about 3 inches apart. This will give the roots room to grow without being crowded.

If your carrots are already growing too close together, you can carefully transplant them to a new location. Be sure to water the transplants well and keep them moist until they are fully established.

  1. Harvest Carrots When Mature

Another reason why carrots split is that they are harvested too early. Carrots need to mature fully before they are harvested. If you try to pull them up before they are ready, the roots will likely be misshapen and split.


Check the root size to confirm if a carrot is ready to harvest. It should be about 1 inch in diameter at the widest point. The roots can also be pulled up and inspected for cracks or splits.

If the roots are still small or show signs of damage, leave them in the ground a little longer.

  1. Handle Carrots Carefully

Carrots can split if they are not handled carefully. When harvesting and storing carrots, avoid bruising or damaging the roots. Bruised roots are more likely to split later on.

Store carrots in a cool, dry place. Do not wash them before storing them, as this can cause the roots to rot. Carrots can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

For more extended storage, wrap the roots in newspaper and keep them in a cool, dark storage place.

By following these tips, you can prevent carrots from splitting when growing. You can enjoy fresh, delicious carrots all season long with proper care.

  1. Watering Routine

The water must also be appropriate; you cannot get that wrong if you need the right carrots. Lesser moist soil is one such problem that you should avoid, but excess water can be harmful.

You will need to check on all that and not have extra water with the carrots.

Keep watering them regularly

The carrots don’t do well under moisture stress. You will need to cut down on the water intake if you are not having any issues due to the lesser moisture, and you might be watering them more often.

That will help you out ideally to fix the split-ended problems on your carrots and have them grow right.

  1. Nutrients

Nutrients in the soil also play a vital role in the healthy growth of carrots. It would help if the soil had the proper nutrients. You will need to get the soil tested for nutrients if you have problems with the carrots growing split.

After that, you can ensure that you add the right number of fertilizers and compost to the soil. These will make up for the nutrients that are missing. That will help you make it all work and grow the perfect carrots you want.

  1. Distance

While making the best of the space you get is the idea that you might have, and you will need to grow as many carrots as possible. But you must ensure that you keep an appropriate distance between the carrots.

Due to the lesser distance between the carrots, the roots will not grow properly. Due to that, they can end up splitting up.

  1. Weeds

Weeds compete with carrots for space, water, and nutrients. If weeds are left unchecked, they can quickly overrun a carrot patch. Carrots also compete with each other for resources.


When planted too closely together, the roots of individual plants can become intertwined.

This not only slows down the growth of each plant but can also cause them to split when they mature. Carrots need room to grow.

If they are planted too closely together, their roots can become intertwined and cause them to split when they mature.

  1. Incorrect Watering

The roots will begin to shrink if a carrot plant doesn’t receive enough water. This process is called drought stress. As the roots start to contract, they can pressure the carrot, causing it to split.

Overwatering can also cause carrots to split. When roots are waterlogged, they can’t uptake nutrients as efficiently. This can cause the carrot to grow unevenly, leading to splits.

  1. Temperature Extremes

Carrots are a cool-season crop. When temperatures exceed 80 degrees Fahrenheit, carrots will start to bolt or go to seed. As the plant bolts, it will begin to produce a flower stalk.

This process uses a lot of energy, causing the roots to become small and stunted.

Carrot roots can develop frost damage if the temperature drops below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. This damage appears as dark spots or bruises on the root and can cause it to split.

2 thoughts on “12 Reasons Why Carrots Split When Growing”

  1. I have one carrot with a section like it was eaten out. this happened with 5 big carrots ina bed of 40, i do have many split as per your illustration but this is different as its a bit like a piece cut out

  2. I have the same comment as Don—a portion of the carrot looks “split” like it did not grow completely around—not like it encountered a rock.


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