Saturday, June 28, 2008

A Mid Summer Treat

Mango the king of fruits is here! One thing which makes me treat the hot and very humid summer season with less contempt is that besides heat it also brings lots and lots of Mangoes – my favorite fruit for all seasons. This season, for the first time, Mango trees in my garden produced a bounty of fruit. Last several years had seen the fruit being destroyed by the notorious Mango Mealy Bug. All measures to prevent the bug from depriving me of my home grown fruit had proven useless. I remember reading in ‘The Alchemist’- one of my favorite books- ' if you want something very badly the whole universe conspires to give it to you!' So this time around there was some divine intervention (as I didn’t try anything new), and despite the bug, fruits thrived. When you are a witness to the whole process of a mango inflorescence turning into a beautiful handsome fruit, you develop a special affection for it. It was a sight to behold. For a mango lover what can be more pleasing than the site of a Mango laden tree standing proudly in her lawn? They withstood strong winds, rains and stood their ground despite all odds. Finally when it seemed that the time and the fruit, both are ripe, I asked the garden help to pluck and pack the fruits away for ripening.The Mango which comes off the tree requires a storage period of 3-4 days in slightly warm and humid surroundings; it is only after that that it develops the sweet flavor and an appealing yellow color – depending on the cultivar. Here lies the advantage of having home grown mangoes: at some places, in order to make a quick buck, unscrupulous vendors do away with the 3-4 days wait time and artificially ripen mangoes with Calcium Carbide – a sinister practice. Calcium Carbide when dissolved in water gives away Acetylene gas which ripens the mangoes quickly and gives them a healthy color, but the gas is highly toxic and inflammable, moreover Calcium Carbide contains residues of Arsenic and Phosphorus, two very toxic chemicals. After knowing all that, it is very difficult for me to not to eye the luscious looking mango at the local market with a considerable degree of skepticism. 4 days later the Mangoes were all ready to begin their journey down our gastrointestinal tracts. A sweet fruity fragrance pervaded the storage room, tingling my nose and taste buds. My little gardener was also quite excited and shared her Mother’s infatuation for the fruit; she has a very natural way of enjoying it – allowing not just the taste buds, but all the cells on her face to savor the feeling!

20 comments:

Nicole said...

Oh, what luscious pictures! I know you and your daughter are going to enjoy this mango season!
The pics remind me of my childhood in mango season, when we'd all pack into the car, armed with sacks and buckets, and pick mangoes by the trunkful from my great-grandmother's estate in Trinidad. She had 3 HUGE "doux doux" mango trees.
I have been enjoying mangoes almost daily for the past few weeks, and also during my month in Asia. I went to the spa in Cambodia and did a facial which included a "mango mask" which I think worked quite well, so now i include that in my home facials-you just spread mango puree on your face for 15 minutes and the fruit acids go to work on your skin.
I guess gardening minds must also think alike, as I also picked up a copy of "The Alchemist’ recently.

Yasmeen said...

Your daughter is the most beautiful flower in your garden.. Very Cute!!
I share ur passion for mangoes too.. we dnt have them at our home but our neighbours do.. And we eat more than them cuz the branches fall on our land:)

Julie said...

Your little gardener is really growing up so prettily!!! She is a living doll!!! I like cold mangos...especially on ice cream, but just cut up in a bowl and very cold is just plain devine! BTW...I loved reading The Alchemist. I may need to do a repeat. I never ended up reading any more of the authors books, but maybe that can be a summer goal.

Magic Cochin said...

I've only tasted imported mangoes - so can only try to imagine the delights of a home grown mango harvest. It looks mouthwatering!!!!

Celia

Matron said...

Thank you so much for this view into your garden. I am passionate about fruit and vegetables, in season and properly ripe - not picked green and held in storage. There is nothing quite like a ripe fruit picked from the plant where it grows! What are you going to do with so many?

MrBrownThumb said...

Hey Green Thumb,

Just wanted to stop by and say thanks for the recent comment you left on my blog. It means a lot.

I love this frut. Though oddly I've never seen the flower before. Here in the U.S we get Mangoes from your area and they're pretty good. A different flavor and texture than the ones that are imported from South/Latin America.

Cool blog.

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Cosmos said...

It seems to be mango tree is your target this time! I wonder how do you pluck the fruits! Is it a device with basket? I have posted in my blog an article related to artificial ripening with Calcium Carbide:
http://natscimedwonders.blogspot.com/2008/06/this-year-seasonal-mangoes-are.html

Your little gardener is seen deeply engaged in relishing on the fruit!

Sue Swift said...

Eeek - I'll never be happy buying mangoes again. Wish we could grow theem here ...

Claude said...

I wish I could eat home grown mangoes, but they just don't grow here... most seem to be imported from Mexico, and I love them, I can't even begin to imagine how wonderful they are fresh...

Louise said...

I love mangoes and this is actually the first time I've seen a mango tree. Here in US we can only buy mangoes from the supermarket. I just can't imagine eating a mango fresh from the tree, it must be really fresh. I love your blog and it is interesting to see a gardening blog from another country.

Chandramouli S said...

Hi!
I'm an amateur gardener and bumped by your site only recently. I should say you have a pretty garden - very colorful one at that. Impressed by you and another blogger (http://geekgardener.wordpress.com/), I started my own (http://inartliesmyheart.blogspot.com/). Wow! Those mangoes look awesome! Slurp... Slurp...

emmani said...

I look forward to reading your posts because of your beautiful photos... wow, I'm soo jealous. We did have a few boxes of kesar mangos and one extremely delicious box of alfonso here in england. Oh I can't wait to get back to India for the real thing. My favourite way to enjoy mangos (apart from having juice dripping from my elbows!) is Mango lassi...yum!

Babs said...

I love mangos! The man in the neigboring apartment would always bring me a few when he went to go food shopping at the market. No more mangos since he's moved away though... I would always eat them over the kitchen sink while the juice dripped down my arms...yum! It was always a special treat to have his gift sitting outside my front door :)

Krinish said...

Hi there
I myself started gardening a year ago and im soo much into it.
I have opened a new site www.gardenersclub.in - Especially to help indian gardeners.
I dindt find many articles or help in ragards with gardening in india.
So I wanted to start something to help each other. This site is not for commercial purpose. im here to make no profits. I just want to bring the gardening community of india together sharing knowledge.
I have three sections of the website.
http://wiki.gardenersclub.in
and the forum and articles index page on http://www.gardenersclub.in.
I would be very happy if you could contribute your articles soo far on the homepage.
I can also arrange for your blog to be hosted with the domain.
say for xample http://indigarden.gardenersclub.in or anything else you want to.
I would install wordpress for you with complete admin access and you can blog there and artcles would be displayed through hompepage and on the blog.
Wordpress has an import feature and hence what ever you have blogged here can be imported through wordpress. i know you have only two entries but thats no probs.
Again let me make it clear. Im not commenting here just like others lokking for buisness growth or business proposition.
Im an amatuer gardener, and want to help other gardeners as well.
My motto is to grow organic and give it bcak to land.
Now im hunting for more gardeners.
I have contacted two gardners with similar comments as im commenting now.

your presence will greatly help us all gradeners
Im from bangalore. lovely place for gardening isnt it?

Bob said...

I am now craving mangos but am now scared to eat one. Do you know of any tests to determine if they have been ripened artificially?
Your little gardener is precious.

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