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Tuesday, January 05, 2010

I can sing a rainbow

Colours seem to be strongly associative, so it often comes as a surprise that those associations can be relatively recent. Not long ago (like in the 1930s) it was thought appropriate to dress baby girls in pale blue and boys in pink or red, the stronger, more masculine colour.

Likewise, if asked what colour a carrot is, virtually everyone would instantly visualise the colour orange, but Victorian gardeners apparently would have been unfazed to see a dark purple root emerging as they pulled the bushy green tops.

Dark purple heritage carrots have become fashionable again, along with blue potatoes and other sillinesses. I don’t think the teeny-tiny yellow tomatoes I found in the market the other day are a heritage variety but even the tomato-averse Man gobbled them up.