Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Mystery Visitor

When I eat an apple, I dump the core in one of my potted plants , not so much because I think it would germinate, but because I do not want to deny it that right if it so chooses. No points for guessing where the bulk of the stuff goes when I am cutting a papaya, a melon or a watermelon. When I sprout moong, I always sprinkle a handful on the nearest pot, and the kids have taken to disposing old uncooked vegetables in my window garden.

So, when I found a creeper with rough, circular leaves sharing space with my plumeria, I had absolutely no idea how to go about identifying it. Within a week of my discovering the plant, it had taken over a huge portion of the window grill – the plant looked lovely, but I was no closer to identifying the visitor.

Buds sprouted, then opened into bright yellow flowers. The flowers reminded me of brinjal flowers or potato flowers, but whoever heard of either plant being such determined creepers? My mother and I debated the taxonomy for a couple of days. We concluded it may be some kind of melon, and decided to wait till the fruits came to know for sure. Unfortunately, none of the copious flowers seemed to get pollinated adequately – there were no fruits, not even the whiff of any.

Now, the plant has all but dried up – only one tenacious branch continues to cling on and let forth a shoot or two every week to let me know it still has life left in it – but the mystery remains.

Will I ever know who my temporary visitor was?

Posted by Picasa

1 comment:

Natasha said...

Flowers of India (http://www.flowersofindia.net/) now has a discussion forum where, among other things, they help you identify plants.
Posted this picture there yesterday, and by today got a reply - the plant belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family, and is almost certainly Cucumis melo, aka muskmelon.


Related Posts with Thumbnails