The traveling root vegetable show

I’m giving a talk this coming Saturday on growing root vegetables (with a cooking demo by fellow MG Maro Nalabandian) at the Montgomery County MGs’ spring gardening conference. And since the event is full and you can’t sign up if you haven’t already, I will give you a glimpse of my props, which are of course a whole bunch of root vegetables. (They are not striped; that’s just bad photography.)

I’ve been shopping! And I’ve organized my purchases into groups according to what botanical type of “root” they belong to, just for fun and edification.

Here’s what I have (from just two supermarkets! – an international one and one with a gourmet produce section):

Carrot, parsnip, beet, celery root, jicama, rutabaga, turnip, daikon, radish, horseradish

Tuberous roots
Yacon (I grew that one actually), sweet potato, yam, yuca

Potato, sunchoke

Taro, malanga

Ginger, galangal, lotus root

Leek, onion, garlic, shallot, elephant garlic

The first two categories are true roots, and the rest except bulbs are modified plant stems. Just so you know. There are of course many other types of root vegetable out there, a few of which I saw and neglected to buy, because there are only so many I can deal with at once. But I’m looking forward to trying all these when they return home from the lecture circuit.

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