I have already resigned myself to eating the cardboard tasting tomatoes
my local produce stores, but now I am finding even the carrots taste
lousy. I still have some carrots growing in my garden which taste great
to me, but anything store bought is either tasteless or bitter. These
carrots with the leaves still attached, which should preserve their
flavor. I can understand the problem of shipping tomatoes, but what
excuse is there for carrots? Next year, I am going to plant an extra
large crop of carrots, say in mid season, so that I will have a supply
them for fall, and possibly in winter (I hear they can be harvested,
with snow on the ground).
I cannot help but wonder that we can put men on the moon, but we cannot
come up with a good tasting tomato that will hold up under shipment. I
do recall that many years ago, you could not even get certain vegetables
in the winter, so maybe we should just take what we can get.
With the leaves still attached they are also potentially loosing water.
And they were probably grown somewhere warm and yanked while
still looking lush. (Carrots are much tastier after the frost has started
nipping the tops and signalled them to start storing sugars.)
I've been happy enough with the cello-bagged organic carrots available
locally that I've given up fighting voles and nematodes to grow my own.
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)
Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced.
As I noted in another thread, it seems that ripe, good-tasting
tomatoes don't lend themselves to mechanized harvest and shipping.
Agricultural colleges receive grants for developing varieties with
thicker skins, more uniform shapes, and a ready-all-at-once growing
schedule. Good taste is a secondary issue.
And yes, IMO, it doesn't seem fair to demand a summer fruit in the
middle of winter and then complain that it's expensive and doesn't
I dunno about carrots. I bought 'top on' bunches in WalMart that were
delicious; a couple months later, they were awful. I queried the
produce manager who said everything comes from different suppliers and
the Pennsylvania ones had been replaced by some from Texas. Or vice
I guess the (my) answer is to grow as much as possible yourself, and
consider a lovely, sun-warm, just-picked tomato a summertime treat.
Besides what Pat said, I find non-organic carrots particularly
At any rate, a good source of quality carrots is a local farmer
market. They have been frosted, and they have not traveled. I am going
this saturday to buy my usual three bushels of apples and 10-20 lbs of
The carrots will last one month, and the apples into february.
The carrots from the market are close in quality to homegrown.
I still have some carrots growing in my garden which taste great
Getting tomatoes in winter has been no progress whatsoever. There are
several vegetables which are good in winter, and wiser people will
limit themselves to those. My garden is fuller in the fall than in the
summer. If you want to harvest carrots through the winter, be advised
that the ground under a poly tunnel will not freeze. Last night strong
winds completely blew away my tunnels, however...
I was reading an article a while back about vegetables going extinct. The
idea was that we want certain vegetables (or fruits) year round and don't
eat things that are in season. So, certain type of vegetables, since they
aren't in demand are not being grown. Some restaurants are trying to buck
the trend and make dishes that are seasonal.
I cannot stand supermarket tomatoes. And even when in season, home grown
broccoli and green beans still top the stores.
I suppose that native american winter veggies may face possible
extinction. However, there are many other parts of the world where
tradition is followed. While living in France for one year I developed
my taste for chicory, for example. You can go to an outdoor market in
february and find freshly picked veggies. Not a tremendous selection,
but just as healthy as their tastier summer counterparts. Likewise, in
this country cider apples are no longer grown, but they are still
thriving in the UK or France (and you can still find them near
abandoned homesteads here too).
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