A word to the wise... when it comes to gardening, curiosity often results in small carrots.
I had planted these carrots a long time ago. Their green tops were looking pretty huge. And even though I'd learned in the past that the carrots are ready for harvesting when you see a little orange (or purple, or white) peeking out from the ground, I decided to pick a few before that ever happened.
I was curious for a few reasons. 1) It's the first time I have ever planted the "Kaleidoscope" carrot seeds, and I wanted to see if they were really as vibrantly-colored as the package indicated (yes, turns out they are, except for the white one, which is supposed to be that way). 2) It has been so, so dry here I was wondering if these root vegetables were surviving okay (and yes, it appears they were). So I picked one, and then another, and then... well, you see what I ended up with. Nine and a half carrots of pretty small size (you can't tell from the picture, but the largest of the bunch was maybe 4 inches long).
The carrots that you grow at home will definitely be smaller than the footlongs you get from the grocery store, but this was a tiny bit premature. So, while this wasn't the stuff that carrot salads are made of, I thought I'd post it anyway. Home-grown will not only not be quite as long, they will also be a little gnarly-looking. But they taste fantastic! A much more carrot-y flavor than the awful baby carrots in a bag, and even better than the full-size ones too, because they are fresh.
They are also very dirty, so while these pictured got a quick rinse with the hose, once inside I soaked them in cold water and used a brush to clean them. And of course if you were to peel them, the insides are nice and clean.
I also want to point out that crazy-looking purple carrot-and-a-half in the middle. You know what that is? A growing carrot that meets a rock underground! It's inevitable that there will be rocks and clumps, but a good reminder to rake the soil nice and deep where you are growing carrots. Unless you are looking to grow witchy-looking Halloween carrots, which you could probably just get from me anyway.