Cuca…what?

Cucamelon, aka Mouse Melon or Mexican Sour Gherkin.

Aren’t they cute?

Never heard of it? Neither had I. It was written up in the daily paper a couple of weeks ago (which I threw out by accident).

So I Googled (as you do).

Here’s a good site (the source of the above photo), that tells you all about it. I’m always looking for new foods to grow so I wanted some seeds. A quick look at the various seed suppliers indicated it’s not common. Diggers sell it, but I don’t like Diggers (actually it’s Clive Blazey I don’t like), but then I found it at 4Seasons Seeds. So I’ve ordered a couple of packets. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Tamarillo update:

I had 2 goes at collecting seed from my tamarillos. I couldn’t find any mature seeds in the first lot I picked, so I let them mature for longer on the trees; in fact I waited until they were actually dropping off. I treated them in the same way as you do tomatoes (fermenting the pulp), and eventually got a very ordinary 12 seeds from 6 fruits. Not wonderful. So I’m afraid that I can’t send seeds to those who wanted some, because I’ve sown them all myself. Sorry.

I’ve had good seed set in other years, so I don’t know what was wrong this year. I never noticed any insects at the flowers, but would have thought if they produced fruits, then pollination must have occurred.

 

Handy Hint Corner

If you’re using slow-release, pelleted fertiliser on tiny seedlings, make sure the pellets aren’t sitting up close against the stem of the seedling. The influx of strong chemicals against the tender stem can burn it and the seedling will collapse. Put the pellets well away, towards the side of the pot.

No-no:

IMG_2615

Yes-yes:

IMG_2616

Larger plants, with a layer of protective bark, should be OK.

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10 Responses to “Cuca…what?”

  1. fergie51 Says:

    Gorgeous looking little tackers! Will have to check them out. I love 4Seasons seeds too, really happy with everything I’ve bought through them.

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  2. Bek Says:

    I love mexican sour gherkins – they don’t really taste sour, just more like tiny cucmbers, which they are. But they are still mega cute and grow really easily. They are in my seed list for planting in September.
    Dare I ask – why don’t you like Clive Blazey? (I’m just curious. I don’t love diggers, but I don’t dislike them, despite their at times awfully slow service.)

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  3. narf77 Says:

    I have been after some of those little cuke seeds forEVER! Cheers for the heads up where to get them Bev…can we get 4 seasons seed here?!

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    • foodnstuff Says:

      If they don’t send to Tas (some suppliers don’t), let me know and I’ll send you some of mine.

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  4. rabidlittlehippy Says:

    I’m curious too about Clive Blazey. I’ve bought from Diggers a heap but have had mixed success. I’ve put it down to my raw beginner and rather slap dash approach to gardening though. And the fact that St Erth is a mere 20 minutes drive away…
    The baby cukes are well cute. Are they good for pickling? I hate eating cucumber but I do love gherkin and pickles. 🙂

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    • foodnstuff Says:

      See reply to Bek above.

      Seems like they’re good for pickling. Maybe the kids would like them fresh…sort of like crunchy lollies 😉

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      • rabidlittlehippy Says:

        Lollies? Ha! I got my kids to eat a salad today. Miracles will never cease! Mango, pear, baby spinach, cos, pickled onions, coriander, gherkins, sauerkraut and gherkins. It was delish but it took some encouragement for them to eat it. Still, maybe cuke lollies might be the way to go. 😉

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