This carrot hasn't taken a turn for the worse!
What you see: A very dramatically (or not so dramatically) bent carrot What it is: A perfectly edible carrot that hit an obstacle while it was growing Eat or toss: Eat! The story: Carrots, as we know, tend to grow in the downward direction, sending the tip of their root deeper into the soil as they develop into the crunchy, typically narrow, cone-shaped roots we know and love. But, what if the soil isn’t so accommodating? If the root’s underground excavations hit dirt that won’t give way? A rock, say? Or some very hard and compacted soil? Simple: the carrot just changes direction. In the case pictured here, the carrot made a 90 degree turn, but the root veggies might reorient in a variety of different ways, resulting in some rather unusual shapes (see more below!). Another factor that might cause a carrot to reorient a bit? Crowding. If there are too many root vegetables growing together, things can get weird. The most important thing to keep in mind: they’re all perfectly edible! Thank you to Daniel Yoder, trials technician at Johnny’s Selected Seeds for these photos!
SOURCES: Daniel Yoder. Trials Technician, Johnny’s Selected Seeds. World Carrot Museum. Cultivation of the carrot - domestic. Small scale organic carrot production. Michigan State University. MSU Extension. Deformed Root Crops - Vegetables. University of Maryland Extension. Home & Garden Information Center.
Between a rock and a soil space....