Sunday 31 August 2014

A riot in the melon patch

This year, we grew our melon plants from seed. Pauline selected two varieties: Petit Gris de Rennes, a Charentais variety from the Real Seed Company; and, from Nicky's Nursery ... Tigger, a complete unknown. We planted them in one end of "the maggot". The two pairs of plants romped away, Tigger appearing to have no female flowers and therefore no fruit. The Petit Gris de Rennes meanwhile were steadily setting frosted green rugby balls.

Male Stonechat presiding over the melon patch, 8th August 2014. No fruit visible...

Then the leaves died back. Eleven melons of each type were revealed. The Tiggers were small, with a delicate pattern in shades of dark and light green.

Four little Tiggers

The Petit Gris ripened, slowly, Pauline picked one hoping to encourage it, no, it proceeds at its own pace.

A row of Petits Gris de Rennes, on the rapidly withering melon patch

This morning in the melon patch, there were two blazing suns. Overnight the two biggest Tiggers had turned rusty orange in zigzags on a yellow background. The fruit were no longer connected to the vines: the stalk was wilting and dropping away.

Tigger transformed

Had they gone bad? Tentatively we cut one in half, revealing a perfect melon with white flesh, dripping with juice and with a most tempting aroma.

Not quite ripe, after all, but all the juice is their own

They taste really good but the subsequent indigestion warned us that we really ought to wait until tthe next one iz fully ripe before we eat it.

Tigger is an heirloom variety, originating in Armenia and much publicised in the USA by small trader organisations such as It has never been commercialised or in any way developed, what you see is what you get, it's a Tigger melon.

Serving suggestions:
Cut your melon(s) in half, scoop out the seeds, fill with fresh fruit salad (blackberries, pears, brugnons and quetsches) and serve, one half per person. NO GINGER POWDER, please. A drop of Rochester Ginger (non-alcoholic) would enhance the flavour nicely.
Serve in thin slices with air-dried ham
Melon ice cream!


Vera said...

Oh well done for growing such fine melons! We have tried to grow melons here but have never yet succeeded, mostly due to not looking after them properly during the growing season. Oh dear, that Rochester Ginger looks divine. I followed the link and had a look at that site. Wow! Shame they don't post to France!

Tim said...

Holland and Barrett sell Rochester Ginger - if someone is visiting you, ask them to bring you a bottle or two. It's lovely stuff!

Colin and Elizabeth said...

Two of ours went rotten virtually overnight... What a waste! Yours look perrrrrfect.

Pollygarter said...

Help wanted tto eat 22 melons! Another plus point for Tigger - since they aren't highly hybridised, they should ripen over a long period, rather than all at once like an F1.