Before pumpkins became the thing to make faces in, there was a long Celtic tradition of carving turnips - the largest vegetable available in the old country, I suppose. You can read some of the mythology behind this in the tale of Stingy Jack. Turnips take a bit more effort to carve than pumpkins, since the flesh is firmer - or so I hear, since I haven't done it myself.
But my mom has! Here is the pictorial history of Lucy Edwards and her turnip jack-o-lantern.
|Scarlet Ohno Revival Turnip - grown a bit large for eating|
|The harvested turnip|
|Prepared for carving - looks like a huge heart|
|The carving begins|
|Partly hollow inside - this saves time!|
|The finished product! Note how the stem bases are left for "hair".|
|With a light placed underneath|
The above turnip was spring-planted and grown in New Hampshire. Anyone here in MD managed to get a turnip to this size and keep it going till October?