This exotic vine has heart-shaped leaves and produces small yellow flowers followed by unusual looking spiky fruits which change colour from green to yellowy-orange when ripe. The seeded, lime-green jelly like interior of the fruit is rich in nutrients and has a mild flavour which is sometimes described as a cross between cucumber, courgette and kiwifruit (although as it ripens, it tastes more like a banana). It is thought to be the ancestor of all other cultivated melons, and should be grown like an ordinary cucumber but with less water and in a dryer atmosphere.
Best direct-seeded at about the time of last frost, but can be started earlier as transplants, provided the seedlings are set out before becoming rootbound. Cucumbers are heavy feeders and thrive in rich soil full of organic matter. They can be trellised if desired. Supply abundant moisture, but not excessive and keep picking mature fruit. Best grown in a greenhouse in the UK or similar climate, and not too humid.
Common name:Cucumis Metuliferus, African Horned Cucumber, Jelly Melon, Hedged Gourd
Packet Content:20 (Approx)