Monday, October 09, 2006

you must be out of your gourd!

Fall is in full swing here right now and I needed a pumpkin to make pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving so on Saturday we took a drive to a small farm one town over. The farm is known for its unattended "U-pick" flower garden where you pay for your bouquet on an honour system, but until our neighbour mentioned it to us, I had no idea that they also sold pumpkins, squashes and the like.

After I saw their huge selection, I couldn't let it go at just one measely pumpkin and we came home with this assortment. Aren't they just beautiful?



First to the ones in the basket. The large green one in the back is a bottle gourd, the smallish pale one a butternut squash. The stripey one is a spaghetti squash, and in the front we have the vivid orange Hokaido pumpkin.

The squash outside the basket to the left goes by the name of Turk's Turban, which says it all, doesn't it? And to the right we have my very favourite - the Speckled Swan gourd. I'm just totally in love with this gorgeous creature and kept giving it little pats on our way home. "Stop caressing that gourd right now!" Mr. M had to say, "people are going to think you're weird!" Heh. Like they don't already.

As lovely as they were, I was forced to sacrifice two of my treasures to that bizarre annual ritual known as Thanksgiving dinner. They were willing victims, though. Never said a word. If you know your vegetables you may have guessed which two met their maker today. One more will be in for it later in the week but I'm trying to be casual about it so the rest of them don't catch on.

We had a little harvest of our own as well.






The grapes are ripe and there are just tons of them this year. The vine actually originates under our neighbours' house but grows over to our side (we live in a duplex) so when we moved in here and built our deck we cut a hole in the boards, letting the vine grow through, and now it has reached all the way up to the top balcony and we can look out our bedroom window and see the grapes hanging there. With this year's bumper crop we may just be making some wine. If it turns out you're all invited to come on over and get really drunk have a taste.

12 Comments:

At October 09, 2006 12:28 AM, Blogger hexe said...

Can't wait to hear and see the results of wine making. Wish I could just pop over for a taste!

 
At October 09, 2006 3:39 AM, Anonymous lillian said...

make your own wine.. how cool!!

 
At October 09, 2006 8:33 AM, Anonymous Belinda said...

don't ask why, but I have a link on how they make wine in prison. you just need a tube sock and a moldy piece of bread.

sounds appetising no? :o\

we have a self-pick garden that sells pumpkins too but whenever I go by I'm ALWAYS on the bike. I'm trying to figure out a way to strap pumpkins to my back so I can ride. hmm....

 
At October 09, 2006 9:27 AM, Blogger christina said...

Hexe - I don't have a clue how to do it, but we might try.

lilian - We'll see if anything actually comes of it.


Belinda - LOL! - plenty of tube socks and moldy pieces of bread in my kids's bedrooms - I'll have to take a look at the link. Yeah, transporting a pumpkin on a bike could be a bit difficult. But I'm thinking you've got all that wool and those knitting needles...

 
At October 09, 2006 5:51 PM, Blogger Expat Traveler said...

You know I was so so so excited that P took me to a pumpkin patch this year. IT was way out in Ladner after stopping off at the bird sanctuary. This place rocked and I got to see all of those varieties of pumpkins. I think we miss a few things like that while living in North Van...

And those grapes are charming. We had growth just like that in Montreux. I loved it!

I'm up for a taste, can I fly over this weekend. ;-)

 
At October 09, 2006 5:52 PM, Blogger Expat Traveler said...

Christina - P checked out making wine online... He figured it out that way...

 
At October 10, 2006 6:37 PM, Blogger CanadianSwiss said...

I was able to figure out the pumpkin pie, but hey, I'm French-Canadian. I think our meals were a bit diefferent. I was wondering what you're going to do with all the other varieties of gourd/squash you have there (except for the butternut, which I have just read about). I'd be cooking for a year with all that!

 
At October 11, 2006 7:10 AM, Blogger Karen said...

Lovely grapes!

 
At October 11, 2006 2:02 PM, Blogger Ms Mac said...

Next year you simply must come fo a visit and see the K├╝rbisausstellung! You would love it!

 
At October 11, 2006 3:17 PM, Blogger christina said...

Expat - Yeah, there's a lot of good stuff in Ladner, but it's so far away. I LOVE the grapevine - it makes the place seem less German and more Mediterranean somehow. Not really sure if we have enough grapes for wine, but I'll research it a bit.

CanSwiss - Yep, I used the Hokaido pumpkin and the butternut squash and the spaghetti squash will be a goner some time this week. The other ones aren't edible - just for decoration.

Karen - Seems to be a two-year cycle - last year there were hardly any and they all turned black! Eew.

Ms Mac - Be careful what you wish for - I might just take you up on that! :-)

 
At October 12, 2006 4:49 AM, Blogger Tim Rice said...

That was a beautiful arrangement of pumpkins, squash, and gourds. A treat to my eyes!

 
At October 12, 2006 5:15 AM, Blogger Ginnie said...

You gave me quite a nice smile, Christina, reading this. I saw my first Turk's turbin in Hannover last year and then just a couple days ago in LA I saw a lot of them. Go figure! I love the thought of you making wine from your grapes. Oooh-la-la.

 

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