I Ate a Hairy Ball

I have been fascinated by hairy balls this past summer. I allowed some vine to grow in my vegetable garden, and it continually sprouted little hairy balls. And then they disappeared. I finally figured out that most likely the local deer visited and ate them. Once  I put 2 & 2 together (4, right?), I threw some netting over one of the fuzzy spheres and hoped that would give it a fighting chance to grow into Jim food rather than Bambi food. It worked! Soon I had one larger hairy ball hanging down.

Ball Fruit 1

Then Climate Change struck. We have had so much rain this year, and we recently had a stretch where my yard was very squishy from so much rain. Plants in my raised garden beds were literally rotting from so much water. The hairy ball vine was one such victim, so I picked the one protected fruit when it was only about the size of a baseball.

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It had become less hairy, almost a reverse fruit puberty. Now that’s a good name for a band.

I wasn’t sure what it was. The one thing I was absolutely sure of was that I was going to eat it. After cutting it open, it seemed somewhat melonish.

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By the time I scooped the seeds out, there was little fruit to actually eat, which was good because it wasn’t ripe at all.

It was too small. It was unripe. It was too seedy. It was virtually tasteless. But it was bonus fruit from my garden. Mmmm, delicious.