Paisley Plant of the Week: Mexican Sour Gherkins

Paisley Plant of the Week: Mexican Sour Gherkins

This week has been all about the cucumbers.

42 plants, five transplanted the rest seeds, were installed in their heavily composted beds this week. Yesterday was spent re-stringing the A-frame trellis from last year. This trellis is great for cost but time consuming for maintaining. I had to make the netting from scratch this year, as all of last years twine had rotted and would break with the slightest provocation.

It took me about 5 hours working by myself, there are a lot of knots, a lot of knots! Why don’t Girl Scouts learn knots like Boy Scouts do? I’ve had to get my son to come do his fancy knots about a thousand times, he never asks me about self-esteem, making new friends or cookie sales. It’s not fair.

Getting on…

Loads of tiny yellow flowers yield loads of adorable cucumbers.

Mexican Sour Gherkins! They pretty much rock. The plants are small, and really pretty. They very much remind me of English Ivy, but they have fruit. Loads and loads of tiny yellow flowers, followed by a gazillion bumpy, watermelon shaped green globes that are delightfully sweet, crunchy and have a slight lemony brightness.

Mexican Sour Gherkin. Adorable!

So, what do you do with them?

You can put them in salads, or eat them fresh like tiny cucumbers. Or, you can pickle them, as I do.

They make a ton of cucumbers, so, unless you have someone to share with, you’ll probably want to pickle them.

We like them bread and butter style, or dill, either way is delicious.

They are easy to grow in a containert, just be sure to give them something to climb on. Also, remember that cucumbers, like their melon and squash cousins, are heavy feeders. Don’t deprive them of some well composted manure and such. The fruit are tiny, about the size of a good sized grape, and resemble lilliputian watermelons.

See how small?

Patrick has them on a trellis in his green garden, and I have two large pots in the back yard that will use one of the cucumber fences to climb when they’re ready.

In Patrick's Green Garden-Mexican Sour Gherkins

So, is it a melon or a cucumber? Yeah, that’s a good question. It is classified Melothria scabra. They are commonly called Mouse Melon, Cucamelon and Mexican Sour Melon as well as what I have already called them, Mexican Sour Gherkin.

Tiny Melon like fruit!

This is a super fun kids garden plant. I know, you think I say that about all of the plants. Not so! Patrick has no interest in all about…well, okay, you might have a point. However, Mexican Sour Gherkins are a great kids plant. = )

Also, if you’re interested, these little guys command a very steep price at Farmer’s Markets, going for around $24 a pound. You should be growing Mexican Sour Gherkins for your own and selingl your surplus, you can put a kid through college. = )

So, I hope by now you’re itching to get your own Mexican Sour Gherkins, here’s where you can:

Seed Savers Exchange

Territorial Seeds

Baker Creek Seeds

Reimer Seeds

I hope you have a perfectly paisley day!~KeriAnne

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