Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Does a Nobel Prize beckon?
Well, having failed so miserably with our self-sufficiency attempt last year - one aubergine and two peppers aren't really enough to feed a family of 4 for a year - I've been quietly confident about this year's effort.
We only planted a small plot but in a few weeks it's gone from this......
I planted 6 tomato plants, a mix of the coeur de boeuf and cherry types, loads of beans, two courgettes de Nice plants (the delicious round ones), some chillis and best of all, two melon plants. I've been dreaming of tucking into the delicious melons from my own garden for weeks. The plants have been tended lovingly, sang to, talked to, watered (but not too much), in fact you'd be hard pushed to find anyone who has lavished so much attention on their veggies.
When I first planted them, the CH came to admire.
"So, what have you got? Beans, tomatoes, courgettes, peppers and... more courgettes"
"No, they're melons" I corrected. "These are the courgettes".
"Well, they look like courgettes to me" he replied.
Well, what would he know, townie that he is. I was brought up (almost) in the country so there's not much I don't know about identifying vegetable plants.
So, a few weeks passed, the plants have all gone mad. The tomatoes are flowering nicely, the chilli plants have loads of little white flowers growing on them and the melons, in turn, have huge yellow flowers.
"Wow, I said to the CH "if every one of them becomes a melon, we'll be laughing!"
"They look like courgette flowers to me" he replied.
Oh for heavens sake! Does he think I don't know the difference? (And anyway, I took them from a rack that was clearly marked 'melons'._
So, you can imagine my excitement when he came in today and asked whether I had seen what had happened to my melon plants.
"What? What's happened? If the chickens have been at them they all be Coq au Vin tonight".
"No, it's better than that. You're not going to believe it"
"What?" I asked with mounting excitement, imagining the first fruits and tucking into luscious melons with the juice dripping down my chin.
"Your melon plant has grown a 7 inch COURGETTE. It's a bloody miracle!"
"WHAAAAATTTT? It can't have. It's a melon plant. It grows melons not flaming courgettes"
I dashed to the vegetable patch and there, winking at me from among the leaves, was a beautiful, shiny, green .......
No, this can't be? I mean, it's not as if I don't know the difference between a melon and a courgette plant, and there's the little matter of the garden centre having sold them to me as 'melon plants' so they must be, mustn't they?
I know what's happened. I've actually created a new hybrid melonette. It's a botanical marvel! It might look like a courgette but it's sure as hell going to taste like a melon. The world will go mad for them. In fact, I may even win the Nobel Prize.