Central Virginia Organic Gardener

"And 'tis my faith that every flower enjoys the air it breathes." - William Wordsworth, 1798

Monday, October 28, 2013

Persimmon and Pomegranate Festival

I went to Edible Landscaping in Afton, VA (http://ediblelandscaping.com/) a plant nursery dedicated to finding, growing and selling plants with edible parts.  Some of these are plants for outside landscaping, some are indoor or greenhouse plants (or need overwintering), and some are for dreamers (they will produce a little, but are great conversation starters!).  I have written about this nursery before, and I am enamoured of its organic practices and mission.  This last weekend (Oct. 26, 2013), the nursery held a "Pomegranate and Persimmon" festival, which included tours of these (and many other) plants.  My favorite plant sold at Edible is the Ichi Ki Kei Jiro persimmon (fondly called "Itchy" at the nursery. Search persimmon entries on this blog for more informatiom). This seemed to be a big favorite during the festival, and were all sold out!  Here are some images with captions and my new acquisitions!

I did not purchase the plant in the photo below, but I will one day soon: a pineapple plant (Ananas comosas).  This is a bromeliad and the main plant dies after fruiting, but see the sprouts below the pineapple in the top photo? These are new plants that can be potted up to start it all over again!

This is an edible cactus: both the fruits and the large paddles are edible (with care taken to avoid and remove the spines!).  The paddles are the basis of dish nopales in Latin American cooking) (Opuntia tuna, the native Prickly Pear cactus):

This is the Hachyia Asian persimmons (Diospyros kaki), a persimmon that must be eaten soft. Gorgeous!  It can stay on the tree and take some frost.
Unfortunately, what I thought was a fully charged camera was not, so I so not have more photos of the festival to show you (search this blog for Edible Landscaping for more photos).  But....

...below here are my two new friends, the taller is a coffee plant (Coffee arabica) and, yes, if I am lucky and diligent, I can make a cup of coffee from it...eventually!  The shorter plant is a Owari Satsuma Mandarin (similar to a tangerine) (Citrus reticulata).  I am able to get fruit from my other citrus, so am hopeful about this one!  Both are waiting to be repotted and placed under lights in my attic.
Go online and look for these fun and unusual festivals in your region!
Happy gardening!

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