Performance of agro-ecological based carrot cultivars affected by plant arrangement
Carrot is a vegetable of worldwide importance due to its high nutritional quality and wide application in food. The adjustment of plant arrangement in carrot cultivars is decisive for the productivity and quality of roots; in a conventional system, a spacing between rows of 20 cm is indicated. However, few studies address the interaction cultivar versus row spacing in an agro-ecological cropping system, suitable for production without pesticides and fertilizers. We examined the performance of carrot cultivars at different spacing between rows on the yield and quality of roots in an agro-ecological system, with the objective of greater sustainability of food security cultivation. This experiment was carried out in Augusto Pestana, RS, Brazil, from February to June, in 2019 and 2020. The design was a randomized block with three replications in a 5x3 factorial scheme, for five carrot cultivars (Danvers, Brasília Calibrada Media, Nantes, Esplanada and Brasília Nina) and three spacings between lines (10, 15 and 20 cm), respectively. The cultivars used are the most used accepted genotypes for cultivation in Brazil. In the study, the indicators of productivity and quality of roots were evaluated. The Brasília Nina carrot cultivar showed high performance in root yield and quality, mainly in the 15 cm spacing between rows in an agro-ecological system. The production of carrot roots with quality and free from toxic contaminants, contributes to the valorization of the product for commercialization and the production of food with greater sustainability and food safety.