Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Curry Leaf Plant

My curry leaf plant is growing in a pot, it is about 5 years old. I bought the small seedling from the nursery, and over the years, I have cut off the stem several times, leaving only the small main trunk as it was infested with the Leaf Beetle, which is a threat to the plant. As as always, this plant has sprung back to life with new branches and leaves. I have found to my horror, a couple of days ago, these beetles and their larvae on some of the leaves. I cut off the top branches since the ones below seems healthy and green and do not have any signs of being infested yet!  I'm keeping a close watch daily for any more of this irritating pests. The only way to get rid of them is to remove them manually, to read a little about this yucky creature and how disgusting they look, you may refer to one of my earlier post, here. And the most effective way to save your plant (from my experiences) is to cut off the stems and branches, don't worry, it will grow again rather quick.

I found this pupa on the curry leaf plant. I googled and found out that this pupa belongs to the Swallowtail butterfly, here.  Notice the way the pupa is being supported. At one end, it seems to be attached itself to the stem, and if you see the picture closely, you may notice a thin line of thread that is supporting and going round the  pupa in the centre, almost like carrying it,  attaching to the curry leaf stem.

Another one, could this belong to the same swallowtail species? 

Can you see the thin thread supporting the pupa? I did not notice it when I took the photo, it is only visible when I downloaded this photo. It has been raining everyday and as I am writing this post, it is raining very heavily right now. Hopefully the pupa would hold on against the heavy downpour. But then, nature always has a way to survive against all odds.

Update on my pineapple fruit. It has grown so much bigger and the crown has developed beautifully!  I'm all smiles!

Happy Gardening !

Monday, February 4, 2013


I've made a long-awaited discovery at my potted garden! My pineapple plant finally has a small fruit growing! I have been looking out for the flowers, for the last couple of weeks, as I have a feeling that it will start to flower very soon. Last week, when I was not paying much attention to it like I have the previous week or so, as I was really busy baking cookies for the coming Chinese New Year, the plant has been busy, growing a small pineapple fruit! I have never seen the flowers of a pineapple plant before, though I have planted pineapples a number of times, I never thought of looking out for the flowers! From what I've read from Wikipedia, some pineapple plants can produce to about 200 flowers and the fruits of the all these flowers are joined together to create what is called the Pineapple Fruit! Wonders of nature! 

I planted the stem of a pineapple which I bought almost 1-1/2 years ago, if I remember correctly, this is of the Yan Kee variety. It has a long and tapered shaped fruit and is juicy and sweet. The price is more expensive than the regular Morris pineapple.

I did not see any flowers, perhaps more flowers will appear as it gets bigger, since it takes more than 200 flowers to  make a complete fruit, keeping my fingers crossed for that! Pineapple plants are really easy to grow, they are practically maintenance-free! I did not do much, except for the very occasional sprinkling of fertilizer. They love the hot sunny sun, and do not need that much watering like most plants. Really fuss-free and maintenance free! And I grew it in a 12-inch diameter pot. From my past experiences in growing these wonderful fruit, it takes about 18-22 months from the day I planted the stem right to the harvesting day! That is a long wait, but definitely worth it.

Such a beauty! Am now waiting patiently for this little beauty to mature. Thinking of planting a couple more of different varieties right after CNY!

The photos above are all taken about 5 days ago, except for the ones below.

 This photo was taken this morning, in search for new flowers. The fruit has grown longer and bigger.

  And there are new flowers growing! Can you see the purple buds peeping out from each little pockets, all the little fruits from these flowers joined together that makes the complete fruit known as pineapple. Wow, now, whenever I see any pineapple, I would think of all the flowers that "created" this lovely fruit.

 One flower already bloomed. There's a couple more at the bottom already wilted.

 Have you seen or notice the flowers of a pineapple before? Now I know why the pineapple fruit has so many "eyes"! 

According to Wikipedia, the colours of the flowers may vary, from lavender to light purple to red. My pineapple plant above has light purple flowers. I'll just have to grow different varieties, it would be interesting to see the different colours of the flowers, and I intend to do that after the Chinese New Year holidays!

Pineapple is one of the auspicious fruit to have during Chinese New Year, besides the popular mandarin oranges. Pineapples are known as "wong lai" in the Chinese language, meaning "lots of luck coming your way". So hopefully, I'll have lots of luck this year! I would definitely love some luck in my gardening area!


I would like to wish all my Chinese friends and readers :

Gong Xi Fa Cai

Wish you good health, prosperity, longevity, and happiness!

May you have success in everything you set out to do!

Yam Seng!