Americans love carrots and tend to believe they have great nutritional value.
Well there is good genetic evidence that wild carrot is the direct progenitor of the cultivated carrot. Selection for a swollen rooted type suitable for domestic consumption undoubtedly took many centuries.
Carrot domestication transformed the relatively small, thin, white, heavily divided (forked or spangled – spread in different directions) strong flavored taproot of a plant with annual biennial flowering habit into a large, orange, smooth, good flavored storage root of a uniformly biennial or “winter” annual crop we know today. Modern carrot breeders have further refined the carrot, improving flavor, sweetness, reducing bitterness and improving texture and color. There have also been significant improvements in disease and pest reduction resulting in ever increasing yields. Flavor, nutritional and processing qualities are also uppermost in the minds of modern breeders.
The Carrot has a somewhat obscure history, surrounded by doubt…
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