Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: The Weirdest Thing I Learned Reading Fiction

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Quick! Imagine a carrot.

What colour is it?

I’m going to guess you all picked the colour orange.

One of the weirdest and most interesting things I’ve learned from a book is that carrots weren’t originally orange. Up until the late seventeenth century, they were nearly always purple. You might see a rare one that was white or yellow, but those colours weren’t encouraged by carrot farms.

A bowl full of orange, yellow, green, and purple carrots sliced into round pieces. How did that change? Some Dutch growers began cross-breeding different types of carrots in the late 1600s. It’s thought that they probably crossed purple carrots with white ones to eventually create the orange carrots we all know.

They also selectively bred this crop to make carrots bigger, juicer, and sweeter than the ones that people ate in previous generations.

I wasn’t able to find the book that mentioned this, but this article has more information for anyone who is interested.


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38 Responses to Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: The Weirdest Thing I Learned Reading Fiction

  1. Okay, that’s pretty cool!!! I love carrots bu thad no idea…

  2. Oh how interesting! I didn’t know that either.

  3. Interesting, especially since I see white and purple carrots in the stores all the time now.

    My post

  4. I learned about carrots and the same basic thing about bananas from a cooking show, but still. We learned stuff. And it’s cool stuff. I kinda want to try a purple carrot. 🙂 Great post.

  5. Mary Morgan

    How fascinating, Lydia! I did not know this. I always enjoy learning something new.

    Here’s mine:

  6. I mean, I’ve seen purple and white carrots in the grocery (usually as part of a specialty bundle with all three colors) but I didn’t know that purple was the original color. That’s neat! And now you have me wondering about purple potatoes.

  7. Food is weird. Food is deeply, deeply weird. I didn’t know that about carrots, but I know that the history of food is weird.

  8. It’s interesting. My parrot prefers different colored carrots. LOL That’s how I learned about the different colors of carrots. Thanks for sharing! Here’s mine.

  9. The more you know! I had no idea carrots weren’t always orange ♡

  10. Have to agree that is pretty cool and not something I knew. Thanks for the piece of trivia and info. You’d think with years in Ag in school I’d have learned that with some of the other things I have learned.

  11. Trader Joes was the first place I found multi-colored carrots. Now all grocery stores seem to have them. I like the baby ones to snack on. They made my ST. Patty’s day dinner more colorful yesterday!

  12. A lot of fascinating history here, especially the one on fairy tales!

  13. I knew from somewhere that they were originally purple but did not know of the other colors – or how they became orange. Thanks! 🙂

  14. Isn’t is wonderful to discover cool little things like that from reading? Love it! And that’s a beauty about the carrots.

  15. I had heard that, but it was probably on Masterchef. Never tried a purple carrot though.

  16. I have seen, and eaten, the other colored carrots, when my mom is feeling fancy, but I had no idea that orange was not the prominent color. That’s an interesting little fun fact you taught me today

  17. Mind blown. Although thinking about it I think I have seen purple carrots before? They don’t look very appetizing though. (Also tagged you in a liebster award if you fancy it!)

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