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Get to know your roots

By Penny Stine

I planted parsnips (I know, parsnips? Seriously? Who eats parsnips?) in July 2011 because a coworker bought the seeds and asked me to grow them for her. I figured if I planted them in July, I'd have a late fall crop that I could dig in December before Christmas.

They never came up. I planted an entire packet of parsnip seeds and not a single one sprouted. Until February or March of this year. Of course, by that time, I had forgotten where I planted them, but I did remember that they were out there somewhere, so I googled parsnips to see what they looked like when they sprouted and didn't accidentally pull them thinking they were weeds. I planted them in various locations around the garden, and had patches of parsnips here and there.

 

I watched them grow for the entire season, and I wasn't going to dig them until later, since Curtis Swift says parsnips are better if you let them freeze. However, I accidentally pulled the greens of one while I was pulling weeds around it, so I figured I'd better pull it before I forgot where it was.

 

 

After I pulled it, I had to pull the rest.

Are these the most awesome, weird-looking veggies just in time for Halloween or what???

 

 

 

I also pulled some carrots and beets and then posed them for a group root crop photo.

 

 

 

 

I brought most of them to work to give them to Lynn, but I kept a couple. I think there's beef stew in my future.  

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