Sometimes, the best surprises that happen in our garden are offered up by those plants which just "pop up" from self-sown seeds. From cosmos flowers and little lavender seedlings to rampaging pumpkin vines, such serendipitous finds are both free and welcome in our garden.
A rockmelon or cantaloupe fruit on the vine.
One such unexpected joy of late has been this rockmelon (cantaloupe) vine. I did not plant it and I can't remember the last time we ate one, but a seed germinated in our soil all the same. Upon my discovery of it, I lifted the vine up onto a wire frame to give it support. I watered it when the weather was hot and dry and I fed it too with some weak worm tea. And it has produced a heavy, round and juicy rockmelon. Just one fruit so far but what a treat!
The sweet, orange flesh of the ripe rockmelon.
We snacked on wedges of our chilled rockmelon on one of the hottest days we've had here this Summer. It was cool and fresh and juicy:) If we are lucky, and our sole rockmelon vine produces another fruit, I would like to try using it in a sweet, icy sorbet (imagine that on a hot Summer's day).
Plants such as this rockmelon, that self sow and grow, not only offer up free flowers, herbs, fruit or veggies but they also show a gardener like me what can be grown in my soil and what spaces and aspects within the garden offer ideal conditions that support a particular plant's germination and growth.
Now that I know rockmelon can be successfully grown in our garden, I just might deliberately plant some next Summer and make that sorbet.
Do you have unexpected plants popping up in your garden?