An unusually-shaped vegetable is a
vegetableor fruitthat has grown into an unusual shape not in line with the normal body plan. While some examples are just oddly-shaped, others are heralded for their amusing appearance, often representing a body part such as the buttocks. Pareidoliacan be common in vegetables, with some people reporting the appearance of religious imagery.
A giant vegetable is one that has grown to an unusually large size, usually by design. Most of these maintain the proportions of the vegetable but are just larger in size.
Vegetables most usually grow into an unusual shape due to environmental conditions. Damage to one part of the vegetable can cause the growth to slow in that area while the rest grows at the normal rate. When a
root vegetableis growing and the tip is damaged it can sometimes split, forming multiple roots attached at one point. If a plant is in the primordium(embryonic development) stage damage to the growing vegetable can cause more extreme mutations. [Plant Answers. " [http://www.plantanswers.com/vegetable_shapes_gallery.htm Why are some of my vegetables growing into such odd and unusual shapes?] ". Accessed 5 June 2007.]
The unusual shape can be forced upon the vegetable. In
Japan, farmers of the Zentsujiregion found a way to grow cubic watermelons by growing the fruits in glass boxes and letting them naturally assume the shape of the receptacle. The square shape supposedly makes the melons easier to stack and store, but the square watermelons are often more than double the price of normal ones. [ BBC News. 15 June 2001. " [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/1390088.stm Square fruit stuns Japanese shoppers] ". Accessed 5 June 2007.] Using similar techniques growers have also created more complex shapes of watermelon, including dice, pyramids, and faces. [PingMag. 12 July 2007. " [http://pingmag.jp/2007/07/12/strange-watermelon/ Funny Shaped Japanese Watermelons] ". Accessed 13 July 2007.]
Some giant vegetables have been purposely cultivated to be of an enormous size, with
artificial selectionbeing used to create large hybrids. Serious growers (those that enter competitions and aim for world records) trade seeds through clubs or over the Internet. [Munts, Pat. SpokesmanReview. " [http://www.spokesmanreview.com/home/outdoor/story.asp?ID=97890 Growing giants takes TLC] ". Accessed 5 June 2007.]
It is common in some countries to celebrate the diversity of vegetable shapes, with particularly unusual items being entered into competitions. Many of these are judged by the
uglinessof the vegetable. [ Cornwall County Council. 16 September 2005. " [http://www.cornwall.gov.uk/index.cfm?articleid=13878 Giant Vegetable Competition and Show at Kehelland Horticultural Centre] ". Accessed 5 June 2007.] Some organisations run contests in which gardeners enter the largest vegetables that they have grown, with pumpkins being particular favourites. [Cheung, Maxine. The Toronto Observer. " [http://www.tobserver.com/cycleoctnov2007/6-12-1-MaxineTurks.html Stouffville grower squashes the competition at the Royal Winter Fair] ". Accessed 5 June 2007.]
Oversized vegetables have featured prominently across many media.
Roald Dahl's " James and the Giant Peach" takes this to the extreme with the title character sailing inside the gigantic peachacross the Atlantic Ocean. Giant vegetable competitions feature in a number of films and television series, such as "" in which it is central to the plot. " That's Life!", a popular British television show, frequently featured unusually-shaped vegetables that were sent in or photographed by viewers.
BBCcomedy television programme Blackaddercontains several jokes relating to the character Baldrick and his obsession with odd shaped turnips. The most notable example being in the episode Beer, in which Baldrick discovers a turnipshaped exactly like a "thingie", forming several jokes throughout the episode.
Unusually-shaped vegetables feature in a
Terry Pratchettnovel "The Truth", where a man constantly submitting them to a newspaper for publication is a minor but frequent annoyance to the paper's editor.
Supernumerary body part
* [http://lovecarrots.wordpress.com/ Love Carrots and Other Vegetables] - "A sporadic photographic journal of weird or humorous vegetables".
* [http://uliwestphal.110mb.com/mutatocollection/ The Mutato Collection] - "A collection of non-standard fruits, roots and vegetables".
* [http://www.hanttula.com/exhibits/mofa/ MoFa-Museum of Food Abnormalties] - "An online exhibition of the Art of Regular Food Gone Horribly Wrong."
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
That's Life! — Infobox Television show name =That s Life! director = creative director = developer = presenter = Esther Rantzen theme music composer = opentheme = endtheme = composer = country = language = num seasons = num episodes = list episodes = executive… … Wikipedia
Supernumerary body part — Supernumerary body parts are most commonly a congenital disorder involving the growth of an additional part of the body and a deviation from the body plan. Body parts may be easily visible or hidden away, such as internal organs.Many additional… … Wikipedia
Daikon — For other uses, see Daikon (disambiguation). Daikon A pile of daikon radishes. Scientific classification Kingdom … Wikipedia
environment — environmental, adj. environmentally, adv. /en vuy reuhn meuhnt, vuy euhrn /, n. 1. the aggregate of surrounding things, conditions, or influences; surroundings; milieu. 2. Ecol. the air, water, minerals, organisms, and all other external factors… … Universalium
Earth Sciences — ▪ 2009 Introduction Geology and Geochemistry The theme of the 33rd International Geological Congress, which was held in Norway in August 2008, was “Earth System Science: Foundation for Sustainable Development.” It was attended by nearly… … Universalium
Life Sciences — ▪ 2009 Introduction Zoology In 2008 several zoological studies provided new insights into how species life history traits (such as the timing of reproduction or the length of life of adult individuals) are derived in part as responses to… … Universalium
china — /chuy neuh/, n. 1. a translucent ceramic material, biscuit fired at a high temperature, its glaze fired at a low temperature. 2. any porcelain ware. 3. plates, cups, saucers, etc., collectively. 4. figurines made of porcelain or ceramic material … Universalium
China — /chuy neuh/, n. 1. People s Republic of, a country in E Asia. 1,221,591,778; 3,691,502 sq. mi. (9,560,990 sq. km). Cap.: Beijing. 2. Republic of. Also called Nationalist China. a republic consisting mainly of the island of Taiwan off the SE coast … Universalium
pre-Columbian civilizations — Introduction the aboriginal American Indian (Mesoamerican Indian) cultures that evolved in Meso America (part of Mexico and Central America) and the Andean region (western South America) prior to Spanish exploration and conquest in the 16th … Universalium
performing arts — arts or skills that require public performance, as acting, singing, or dancing. [1945 50] * * * ▪ 2009 Introduction Music Classical. The last vestiges of the Cold War seemed to thaw for a moment on Feb. 26, 2008, when the unfamiliar strains … Universalium