Re: The Original Carrot grown in 2000 BC was Purple.

Posted by Amaranth Rose on May 17, 2002 at 07:55

Re: The Original Carrot grown in 2000 BC was Purple. (Andy™)

The color is determined by what is in the plant. For example, the leaves on trees always contian red and orange and yellow pigments, but you only see them in the fall when the chlorophyll decays because it masks them. The deep red of the anthocyanin would effectively mask the lighter orange pigments. If my guess is correct ,they will try to breed these carrots until they get an accidental genetic event which "uncouples" the purple color gene from the beta-carotene gene, then breed that back to get orange (familiar) carrots with high levels of beta-carotene.

"I, for one, would like a purple or a white carrot. "

Why don't you write to Dr. Pike at Texas A & M and ask him where you can get some seeds? Most researchers are glad (heck, they're positively delighted!) when people show interest in their projects, and he might have some culled seed which he might send you for your own use.

I for one can see a multicolor carrot salad, or multicolor carrots in gelatin, as being a striking and attractive dish. It would be interesting to have a row of multicolor carrots and get to guess what color you're going to get when you pull one up. I guess I'll have to take up carrot culture.

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