When I went back outside to try to determine if the melons growing are male or female, I found out that one of the flowers I had photographed in the melons post is a mutant!
You see that flower on the right? It has two flowers growing out of the same caylx!I tried my best to get a picture of the base of it, and you can hopefully see through the blurriness that the calyx is a fused one. I’m not sure if this is common. I’m not sure it will make a difference, as I’m pretty sure it’s a male flower. My understanding is that plants from the family Cucurbitaceae often produce male flowers before female flowers. I wonder what this melon would look like if it grew from a double flower like this… I wonder if it could.
This weekend had a lot of garden excitement. David finished weeding the flower beds and spread the rest of the mulch yesterday. We finally tied up our rambling oregano, replanted parsley and thyme and planted the last of the tomatoes, tomatillos eggplant and peppers. Yes, I’ll probably write about those soon, but my biggest thing that I am excited about (and even sent picture texts to my gardening friends) is that I got to use my new Roo!!
I first read about the Roo on Garden Betty, and knew that I wanted one but wasn’t sure that I needed one. This spring, as we expanded our gardens, I decided that I needed one (and it came in purple). You see, I used to wear long skirts quite often, and I would fill them with the harvest. The Roo is much more practical. Here’s some pictures of me demonstrating it’s use after harvesting our first batch of basil.
I’ve already used to Roo to hide Rosie’s ball. She hasn’t figured out how it works yet. You can see the basil peaking out of the giant pocket. When I went inside, I enlisted David’s help to photograph how the Roo works.
I checked to make sure all the basil was out. (It was.)
And here is our first crop of basil! We have basil growing in both the side yard and back yard. Some of it was beginning to flower, but it was perfect timing as I only found two opened flowers in the whole harvest. I took pretty big cuts off the basil, shaping it for growth throughout the summer. Typically David and I harvest basil about 4 times during the summer, and I think we have twice as many plants. This shouldn’t mean twice as many harvests, it just means twice as much pesto (we hope!).
When we make pesto, the first step is cleaning the plants. I enjoy doing this in the morning and love the smell and feel of it. It sometimes reminds me of when I worked on a farm in Vermont, and we would gather around the table to begin our workday by prepping basil for pesto.
David then takes the basil leaves and makes pesto! I prep, he cooks. We’re both happy with that deal. The cleaning part is still undecided.
We freeze it in ice cube trays, pop them out and keep them in bags that last the year. We are now cleaning out the leftover ones from last year, and will be having pesto with as many things as we can during the next couple of weeks.