Thursday, July 17, 2014

Mouse Melons are Here!

I have two major gardening experiments this year. One is the basket of potatoes, which should be ready to harvest soon, so I will write about that when it happens. The other was the planting of Mouse Melons or Mexican Sour Gherkins.

These little viners are taking over! I didn't have more than ten seeds, and these plants are very small as far as space needed between them, but the five that I think made it through the transplant have completely taken over one side of one of my four by four raised beds. This is not a bad thing, I love seeing a plant thrive. It makes me tickly on the inside.

According to all the literature, these bitty melons are supposed to hit about 2 inches, but these ones are far smaller as you will see. I was noticing some yellow on them, so, if they are like cucumbers, I would rather pick early than end up with a bitter fruit.

Mouse Melons I picked today. These are also sold as Mexican Sour Gherkins and a couple other names.

I was so excited I popped one right in my mouth, washing be damned! I avoided eating any bugs in my haste, and was very surprised at the huge flavor in such a little fruit. This tastes the way I expected the Lemon Cucumbers to taste. They taste just like cucumbers, but with a twang of lemon. The first bite registered as a little bitter, but that immediately fell away to the true nature of this lovely little curbit. (I believe the jury is still out on its full classification, but the more formal name is Melothria scabra). The lemon flavor is light, but really refreshing, I really can't explain how much I like these. So far it seems that I will be getting many, many fruits to experiment with over the summer, so stay tuned!

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