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Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

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Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 7/31/2015, 2:50 pm

I want to try Fall crop of carrots. Got some Kaleidoscope seeds at KMart. Are they sweet and good like the orange kind, or just cool looking and a novelty?

Also am going to try kale for the first time. Advice?

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/31/2015, 3:00 pm

On Kale? Give the normal size ones room. They get big. They can easily take over an additional square or two.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  sanderson on 7/31/2015, 3:06 pm

Never had any luck with carrots.  Best advice I can give is to protect the kale from the white butterfly with bridal tulle, mosquito netting, etc.  Don't splash the leaves when watering.  In my temperate climate, they love cool weather and can survive with mild freeze.  I cover the frame with 4 mil plastic if the temp is going do drop much below 32*F.  Just don't forget to remove plastic in the morning or you will bake them!

PS: I pushed the envelope and planted 2 diagonally per square as well as Swiss chard. I like to cut and grow them all winter. 8 squares total and I had to freeze or give them away.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Marc Iverson on 7/31/2015, 3:35 pm

That sounds like great success, sanderson! I come in with a big container full of kale leaves and after I strip the leaves off the stems and steam or sautee the kale, it all comes down to a modest little bowl. I can't imagine how much kale it would take to serve everyone a good portion at, say, a big family Christmas dinner.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  CapeCoddess on 7/31/2015, 4:09 pm

I wasn't thrilled about the flavor of the colored carrots and now only grow the orange ones. But they may be different in your area. Try them and let us know.

Kale rocks! There are so many different kinds, flavors and colors. For eating raw on sandwiches, smoothies or salads, I pick them young. The older ones can be cooked and eaten, or blanched and frozen for later. But as previously stated, if the white cabbage butterfly is in your area, cover with tulle at planting time. Don't wait on that or you may be sorry.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 7/31/2015, 4:59 pm

Thanks, guys. Yes, I am sure those white cavorting butterflies are the bad guys, so to speak. I kinda thought those colored carrots were just pretty, not sweet and delicious.

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Multi-colored carrots and kale

Post  Windmere on 7/31/2015, 5:31 pm

Yes, multicolored carrots are delicious (at least we think so).  My wife is partial to Lunar White, but be very careful not to let it get too old, or it becomes woody.  Also, carrots can get woody when they experience heat (also from my experience).  In that case they are inedible.  I let my last batch get too old and they got a big dose of heat.  They are in the compost bin as we speak. I think Lunar White is the only one where I can actually tell the difference of it being a little sweeter.   However, I wonder if it's the "Wonder Bread" of carrots (meaning a less nutritional variety) since it has no color.   That's just a personal musing based on no facts.

More than anything, multicolored carrots are fun in salads and they keep my daughter's excitement level high.  I picked up some multicolored seeds on clearance from HD for a buck something (kaleidoscope).  There are lots of other vendors who are selling blends.  I'm going to plant them again because they make for striking salads...  we like to be unique when we bring salads to little get-togethers during fall and winter.  Let me tell you, walk in with a salad with carrots of all colors and even a few interesting shapes, and folks are wowed.  Add some pretty edible flowers like some pansies/violas and your salads will be legendary.  On top of that, add some colorful kale, and well.... folks will never forget it.

We also tried Dark Knight carrots one season.  So purple they are almost black, they have a yellow center.  Very interesting, but not as sweet as we would have liked.   I'm debating whether to plant those again.

Parisian carrots are interesting (spheres), but I find them impractical because they get to be the size of a golf ball (and same shape) and that's it.  Again, they have some appeal for that special umph for a salad.

I've also worked with "Little Fingers."  They are like baby carrots... however, I personally feel that these are also a waste of space too.

Danvers is one of my favorites because it's short and fat.  It really lends itself to shallow planting areas.

Regardless of what you plant, they are all going to take the same amount of space no matter what type you plant.

I think, across the board, any carrots you plant are going to be sweeter coming from you garden... as opposed to standard grocery store.

As for kale, in my experience, you might be able to fudge a little on cramming a couple into one square.  But, honestly, some varieties are monstrous.  I've planted Siberian Red Russian, Scarlet, Vates Blue Scotch Curled, Lacinto Nero Toscana, and Dwarf Blue Curled.  Our family's favorite is the Siberian Red Russian.  It becomes beautifully sweet when the first frost hits and it's an attractive plant.  The Atlanta Botanical Gardens and local hotels plant them all over their grounds during the cold months.

This year, I plan to plant our favorite, the Red Russian.  I saved seeds from last season, so it'll be cheaper for me too.  That might be all I plant.

Also, I prefer to plant kale in late fall.  The cold hearty varieties can do quite well in very subfreezing temps.  Also, and this is HUGE, there are no bugs in winter here.  It's too cold for them.  I don't have to apply neem, BT Thuricide, etc.  Same goes for carrots.

Hope that was helpful...  I'm afraid I've rambled a bit.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 7/31/2015, 5:58 pm

Yes, very helpful, thanks Windmere! The kale variety I have is called Premier. That Russian Red sounds awesome!

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Turan on 8/1/2015, 12:59 am

We like multicolored carrots quite a bit.  Each color is different.  We do not particularly like sweet carrots so that is not our criteria.  We find the white too bland to bother with.  The purples are denser and hold a nice carrot flavor in stews and other cooking really well.  They are not especially sweet.  Reds are rather like the orange ones.  Our favorites so far are Purple Sun and Danvers.  I am also trying a long season carrot called Laguna.  It is orange but 120 days.  Purple sun is a 90 day and Danvers is 70 day.    I also like presenting a bowl with different colored carrots for interest and the subtle different flavors.

So it depends on what you want and what is a good carrot to you?

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/1/2015, 1:21 am

Is the texture at all different with any of them? Like, would you have to cook them in different ways to reach the same texture, if that's even possible?

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Turan on 8/1/2015, 11:17 am

No. You can make a bowl of julienne carrots using all different colors and it will be delightful as is.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 8/1/2015, 11:29 am

Do they stay the same color when cooked?

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Turan on 8/1/2015, 11:35 am

Of color and flavor and roots~

My brain had grouped beets, purple and red carrots as all having various amounts of the same flavenoid anthocyanin.  I went looking to double check myself and found I was wrong.  Happy morning here. Laughing

Beets get their lovely color from betanin which is sited to lower blood pressure.

Xanthophylls, similar to beta-carotene, give yellow carrots their golden colours; they are linked to eye health and may reduce the incidence of lung and other cancers.
Lycopene, found in red carrots, is a type of carotene also found in tomatoes. It is believed to help prevent heart disease and, in conjunction with other phytochemicals, reduce the risk of certain cancers, including prostate cancer.
Anthocyanins and pigments of the flavonoid (as opposed to carotenoid) class are found in purple carrots. In the human body these pigments act as powerful antioxidants, immobilizing harmful free radicals. Anthocyanins can also help reduce the risk of heart disease by slowing blood clotting.
White carrots lack pigment but may contain other beneficial phytochemicals. More research is needed.
Lutein is one of the hydroxy carotenoids found in yellow and orange carrots and makes up the macular pigment of human retinas. Consuming foods high in lutein may increase the density of this pigment and decrease the risk for developing macular degeneration and other age-related diseases.
http://www.carrotmuseum.co.uk/carrotcolours.html

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Turan on 8/1/2015, 11:48 am

@Scorpio Rising wrote:Do they stay the same color when cooked?

According to DH and my memory they do.  It is not as bright though, the purple grays some, like it does in purple potatoes.  We ran out in January.....

Apparently the purple in snap beans is also anthycanins.  So why do they turn green and the carrots do not?  I think it has to do with the depth of pigmentation.  THe beans it is just an outer coating, easily cooked off and below is the more durable green.  The carrots are purple to the core.

Also I learned that some acid (lemon or vinegar) in hte cooking water and not over cooking will help retain the purple in your beans.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Goosegirl on 8/17/2015, 7:53 pm

I am late getting in on this thread - it has been a ROUGH month!  My favorites so far have been the Cosmic Purple carrots.  They are dark purple on the outside and bright orange on the inside.  Very sweet, crunchy, and look absolutely fantastic cut as sticks or sliced.  They do gray up a bit if overcooked, or if blanched and frozen, but they still taste great.  

Every time I think I have run out of them (from my 2013 season, as 14 & 15 were both busts) I find another few bags at the bottom of the chest freezer.  Several months ago I thought I had found my last 2 bags, then found a few more, then a few more, and as of last week I found FIVE more buried under the bags of chicken and tubes of ground beef!  Yes, 2013 was a bumper crop!  I think I harvested 24 square feet of carrots that year.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 8/17/2015, 9:07 pm

I wondered where you were, GG! Almost pm' you over the weekend....glad you are back!

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/18/2015, 12:10 am

@Goosegirl wrote:
Every time I think I have run out of them (from my 2013 season, as 14 & 15 were both busts) I find another few bags at the bottom of the chest freezer.  Several months ago I thought I had found my last 2 bags, then found a few more, then a few more, and as of last week I found FIVE more buried under the bags of chicken and tubes of ground beef!  Yes, 2013 was a bumper crop!  I think I harvested 24 square feet of carrots that year.

Holy cow! I suspect many people don't even have 24 square feet total, and you had 24 sq feet of just carrots! You must really love carrots to death!

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  sanderson on 8/18/2015, 3:44 am

24 sf Shocked

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Goosegirl on 8/18/2015, 7:25 am

I do love me some carrots!  That year I had a bumper crop of carrots and onions. I planted 2 of my big boxes (each 4x6) in a checkerboard pattern alternating onions and carrots.  Unfortunately when I bought seeds again my bag of Cosmic Purple seeds must be a bust.  Very poor germination for the last 2 years.  Since each packet has 300+ seeds, I had enough of the same packet to plant again this year (scaled down the sf because of the backstock in the freezer).  I thought last year's issue was because of a flooding downpour the week after planting, but apparently not.  I got 13 carrots last year.  I will probably get about the same amount this year.  Time to open a new packet!!!  Never had that happen before with Cosmic Purple, but I suppose every variety of seeds can have a dud bomb.  There's always next season!

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  herblover on 8/18/2015, 11:00 am

I have never frozen carrots!  They keep so well in the fridge I just bag them up and use them.  I can't tell much taste difference in 'Kaleidoscope' vs others ( I have had great success with 'Scarlet Nantes' and 'Little Finger'), but they grow well in my garden.

Kale is one of my faves; I just pulled up the early plants and replanted this weekend.  I will be freezing some for the winter as 2 huge bags are sitting in my fridge now.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Goosegirl on 8/18/2015, 6:23 pm

I have never been able to successfully store carrots in the refrigerator, so I freeze mine - I also would not have refrigerator space for the amount of carrots I grow at a time.  Depending on the year and my spare square space, I like to plant between 200 & 400 carrots per season.  I usually do between 200 & 300 onions as well.

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 4/24/2016, 5:28 pm

Well, just got done planting a SF of Kaleidoscope, SF of Tendersweet, and Sugar Snax. I was AMAZED at the difference taste and texture-wise of grocery carrots vs garden, and all I grew last year war Tendersweet, they ROCK!

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Windmere on 4/24/2016, 8:53 pm

@Scorpio Rising wrote:Well, just got done planting a SF of Kaleidoscope, SF of Tendersweet, and Sugar Snax.  I was AMAZED at the difference taste and texture-wise of grocery carrots vs garden, and all I grew last year war Tendersweet, they ROCK!
Nothing beats that sweet flavor!

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  landarch on 4/25/2016, 2:26 pm

In the past I've done Scarlet Nantes, Kuroda, Danvers Half Long, Royal Chantenay, and Atomic Red.  This year all Tendersweet.

The Atomic Red weren't as productive as the others...and tasted the same.

My friends who grow carrots always work in some hardwood ash into the soil.  Beets do well with it as well.

I transplanted carrots this year (started indoors in tiny soil blocks).

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 4/25/2016, 10:07 pm

@Windmere wrote:
@Scorpio Rising wrote:Well, just got done planting a SF of Kaleidoscope, SF of Tendersweet, and Sugar Snax.  I was AMAZED at the difference taste and texture-wise of grocery carrots vs garden, and all I grew last year war Tendersweet, they ROCK!
Nothing beats that sweet flavor!

And the texture was so soft and crunchy at the same time?! Unbelievable! That is whybI tripled my square footage devoted to these goddesses! carrot

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Re: Are those multicolored carrots tasty?

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