Wednesday, October 03, 2007

There is a new intruder in the Garden

As I work on reclaiming my garden, I noticed a new vine growing everywhere in the backyard.
I never saw this particular vine before. Today as I was cutting away I noticed an orange fruit hanging from the vine.
“Surprise, Surprise” This is the same fruit I used to play with when I was growing up in Cuba. My friends and I would use it as throwing objects; they would make a great splash. These vines were growing wild everywhere on the island mostly on fences.
The fruit splits open when is ripen and birds love the red seeds inside. I am guessing this is the way it got to my garden.
If I had the space I would let it grow on the fence for all time sakes, but it is very aggressive vine and as you can see it grows over everything. I don’t know the name of this vine so if any one out there knows the name let me know.


Ki said...

It's a bitter melon. See this site for a photo. And this one too.

Yolanda Elizabet said...

What a surprise your garden had for you: an old childhood friend. The fruits look very pretty. You are probably right in thinking the birds brought it to your garden. Many plants arrive that way. ;-)

Nicole said...

Yep, wild bitter melon, related to the big bitter melons sold in Asian markets. The leaves are used as a tea in India and the Caribbean as a diabetes preventative and the University of the West Indies did quite a lot of research on it.
In India the researchers have also found evidence of the Indian bitter melon preventing cancer. My mother used to stuff the seeded green fruits with a pasted of tomatoes, onions, curry and tamarind and deep fry. Its called "Kalongi"