Bindweed roots. Found them in a layer of soil on top of a piece of landscape fabric that was protecting the strawberries and asparagus, and I pulled them out one by one. You know what they remind me of? Pictures of parasitic worms, and they are just as nasty. This small pile was inhabiting a 2 square foot plot of earth – how many thousands of roots are still out there?
Makes me long for Roundup.