Down on the Allotment

What's happening down on the allotment? An intimate account of a passionate veggie grower.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Madeira - A Tropical Paradise

I've just come back from a short break on the Island of Madeira. Besides the wonderful tropical gardens and landscape, I was visiting a friend who helps to look after some of the stray dogs on the island. Couldn't resist sharing this puppy with you! It was just so wonderful to see tropical fruit growing out there! When these fresh fruit are in season and just freshly picked, the taste is heavenly!
Pomegranates and cherry guavas.
Guavas and dates.
Mangoes and custard apples.

Bananas and Cerimans... Cerimans?? these are the fruit of the Monstera Deliciosa or Swiss Cheese plant. You will recognise these as common houseplants but this fruit tastes like a cross between a pineapple and a banana. It is also known as a fruit salad plant for that reason. You pick off the green scales to reveal a sort of a cream coloured mushy sweet corn cob. The taste is delicious..but.... it has very tiny, hairy spines which tingle on your tongue like eating a cactus! The sensation is not as pleasant as the taste!
Well, Matron has broken one of her cardinal rules to bring you a couple of flowers!!
Above is a plumeria. Such a heavenly scent!
And the most famous flower on the island, the Strelitzia or Bird of Paradise Flower.

5 Comments:

At 11:02 PM, Blogger Dan said...

That puppy is adorable, I would have brought it home.

I wish I was in the tropic's right now, I am looking out at 2.5cm of snow and lows of -10c tonight.

There really is an amazing diversity of fruit in the world and very nice flowers. Thanks for sharing.

 
At 3:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was an interesting bit about the cerimans. I wouldn't have believed you that monstera ever has a fruit if you hadn't had the photo as proof! I think I want to taste a ceriman... no, on second thoughts, I don't!:))

 
At 10:22 AM, Blogger Vegetable Heaven said...

It makes our selection of home-grown fruits look a bit insipid doesn't it? I never mind a flower or two - without them we don't get fruits and seeds.

Lovely pictures.

 
At 12:35 PM, Anonymous I Wet My Plants said...

Oh, how interesting! I love that date picture! I've always wondered what they look like on a tree and now I know. Ha ha, I know about cardinal rules - I just recently broke mine and posted a picture of a cat! I hope you had a great time!

 
At 8:57 AM, Blogger Parsec said...

Plumerias are my favorite. I have never smelled such a wonderfully fragrant flower. Tuberose ranks pretty high, though, too.

 

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