Sunday, April 21, 2013

first, and possibly last pepino

There is not much to talk about today. I picked my first pepino for the season today. With the extra late setting this year combined with the frost a couple of nights ago I don't hold out much hope that I will get any more. Oh well, most years I get a good crop of large fruits, you win some, you lose some.

Most of the plants and fruits came out of the last frost only slightly burnt but that will change with a few more frosts on them. If the winter isn't severe pepinos can often live through them but they can't take frosts below -2 degrees at all.

I looked around for more interesting vegetables to take pics of but just because I didn't have anything else worthy of taking pictures of tonight, I took a photo (below) of my carrion flower plant, Stapelia mutabilis. These are from Africa and like all carrion flowers they smell like rotting meat. I love all the different species of carrion plants because I find the flowers so fascinating, but I certainly wouldn't want to use them as cut flowers. Some types of carrion flower plants have flowers that are huge but mine has flowers that are only around 8cm across.

This plant has a heap more flower buds on the other side so it will look a treat when they are all out.

Carrion flowers smell like they do to attract their favourite pollinating insects - flies.

I do grow another carrion flower called 'Voodoo lily' (Amorphophallus konjac). It does have spectacular flowers but I am growing it because the large bulb is used as a popular food in Asia. You can also use the bulb to make a vegan alternative to gelatin. Mine have died down for the winter but I will take some pictures when they flower.

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