What Are the Different Types of Carrots?

There are four different categories of carrots – learn them here.

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Photo by: Shutterstock/5 second Studio

Shutterstock/5 second Studio

Varieties of carrots are divided into categories based on their shape. There are four different carrot types that will be discussed in this article, they include Danvers, Nantes, Imperator, Chantenay and Ball (or Mini):

Danvers – When most people think of a carrot this is the type that they visual. They are long, skinny, taper to a point and typically are orange in color, although they are available in more shades. The foliage and taproot are longer than Chantenay. They are more tolerant to poor soil. The name comes from where they were developed in Danvers, Massachusetts. Preferred varieties include ‘Yellowstone.'

Nantes – They were first described as almost perfectly cylindrical being both round at the tip and top, having sparse foliage and with near red flesh that was sweet flavor and nice crunch. Their name is taken from the Atlantic coast of France where the area is ideal for growing this type of carrot. This category can also be referred to as Scarlet Nantes, Early Coreless or Nante Superior. There is estimated to be over 40 different varieties of carrots that fall into this category. A very quick growing carrot and matures faster. Preferred varieties include: ‘Napoli’, ‘Touchon’, ‘Napa’ or ‘White Satin.’

Imperator – This category is what most commercial growers produce and commonly found in grocery stores throughout the country. They are very similar looking to Danvers, but thicker in width and often a higher sugar content than the other categories. The foliage is very fast growing compared. The roots of this grouping is longer than all others listed above. Preferred varieties include: ‘Japanese Imperial Long’, ‘Cosmic Red’ or ‘Sugarsnax 54.'

Chantenay – Before Nantes were developed this category was the best to plant in heavy or rocky soil due to its size. Chantenay typically only reach 6 to 7 inches long making them very short and broad. These are a great choice for those gardening in containers or soil described above. However, it is important to harvest at the length mentioned because they do become woody and not tasty if harvested too late in the season. Very vigorous top growth and store extremely well. Preferred varieties include: ‘Red-Cored Chantenay’, ‘Hercules’ or ‘Carson Hybrid.'

Ball or Mini – This grouping includes carrot varieties that are shaped like radishes or miniature compared to Chantenay. Again they work extremely well for those gardening in containers due to their short taproot and required growing area. The miniature forms that only reach about 3 to 4 inches long are typically served whole with the tops attached. Radish-shaped varieties are typically cross-sectioned to see the beautiful circular pattern inside. Preferred varieties include: ‘Babette’, ‘Romeo’ or ‘Paris Market.'

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