Thursday, November 3, 2011

Sweet taste of patience

I've been absent for a little while, observing the necessities of life. I view my relationships with people with just as much importance as my relationship with the land. Each need a contribution of time, personal investment and yes, even the moments of harvesting a fruit or two.

So it's with great joy, I get to mix the two in what news I'm about to share next. Do you remember our beloved Bluey, the pineapple? Bluey has been in the ground for two growing seasons now (so about 2 years) and his baby appeared not long after the floods passed through.



Starting to flower early 2011

It was so exciting to see something develop after such a long time of waiting. Bluey started from a simple pineapple top we stuck into some potting mix, then transplanted into the garden once enough roots had developed. Then came the long waiting game. Thankfully pineapples are happy to be left alone without too much fuss. A bit of water and a bit of mulch (lots of sunshine) is all Bluey needed to produce this...



Harvested late 2011

Goodness, what a lovely looking pineapple after two years investment. Was it worth it? Absolutely! In fact, another one of our pineapple plants decided to fruit when it came time to harvest old Bluey. We also have another dozen or so coming along (some in the ground and some in pots) but it will take another growing season or two until we see baby fruit appearing again. We have the time to wait though, because that's the nature of sweet patience.

Oh, and wasn't Bluey sweet!



Mmm...

I swear, food you pick from your own garden tastes like it's living. You can feel the sun's rays still being processed in the fibre of sweet pineapple flesh, as it goes down your throat and tickles. Your eyes light-up as if everything suddenly gets switched on! Bluey my friend, you were so worth the wait.



Goodbye old friend

We did cut you up and and eat you with a sense of - how can I put it - remorse, that you would no more be in our garden to visit on our little walks. No more waiting for you Bluey. But then you gave us something else to cherish...



Hello afternoon tea!

The joy of having tasted how sweet patience can be. The experience of having a tiny piece of the sun's rays in our belly's to savour for one warm afternoon meal. Two years of memories and we have now sown the seed of knowledge to our little girl as well. The fun of propagating and visiting the garden to see what delicious surprises are in store. The real taste of soft pineapple cores, not the stringy tough ones from commercially grown fruit.

Bluey was so impressive in flavour in fact, that our daughter haggled me for every piece of pineapple flesh there was. I've never seen her that enthusiastic to eat pineapple before. If she had been a raptor - one of her favourite dinosaurs - then she would have stripped the carcass clean.

And all we had to do Bluey, was stick you in the ground to grow. Until next time we see you in the garden again, when your new pineapple top beckons us to visit and to wait one more time. We will wait again for you Bluey II. We will play the sweet taste of patience game.

7 comments:

  1. I'd love to try to grow pineapples. Alas, Melbourne's too far south...

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  2. Hi Frogdancer. Thanks for stopping by. :)

    I know there are more growing challenges for pineaples in Melbourne, but I also know of someone growing them in pots at the Blue Mountains (NSW).

    If you've got paving or a wall which collects heat, place your pot there until winter, when you bring it inside during the night. Not as easy as sticking it in the ground and letting it take care of itself, but still possible to grow in cold climates.

    We get frosts here too, but also placed Bluey amongst other plants (above a stone retaining wall) so together, created a kind of micro-climate that worked.

    Maybe you could experiment too. :)

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  3. A job well done! It looks delicious to me! I have thought about trying to grow one in pots indoors. Another friend told me that sometimes, even indoors a type of greenhouse might become necessary-just encasing the plant in plastic. I don't know if that is true but it might be worth a try for us. We could never accomplish this otherwise because winter here goes far below zero. Tropical fruit have to be grown indoors.

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  4. Oh my mouth is watering... yummmmm! Excellent result, no wonder there are happy faces :-)

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  5. In many ways, LindaM, I reckon the optimal growing conditions for a pineapple (even better than here) could be achieved in a glasshouse.

    I've seen indoors atriums (a central room inside a house, with a glass ceiling) give wonderul humid conditions for tropical plants to grow. This could also be acheived with a glasshouse built to the side of a house.

    Maybe not all this trouble just to grow a pineapple, but perhaps a range of tropical fruits you wouldn't otherwise get to grow yourself. The added bonus if a glasshouse is attached to your existing house, is the heat it can generate during winter.

    I'm always toying with the idea of a glasshouse on the north side of the house, for winter veg. ;)

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  6. Thanks mountainwildlife, there were happy faces all round that day. Plenty of sticky fingers too! It's amazing how quickly 3 people can total a pineapple, LOL.

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  7. Hi Chris
    We were going to build a greenhouse on the south wall of our house this year but ran out of time. Even then, without heating, the temps at night wouldn't be ideal for tropicals in our area.
    I will figure someting out eventually though. We have pans for a sun room one day- heated in winter.

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