Of the vast family of Solanaceae, and there are about 1700 species of them, only potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers and physalis are cultivated in our gardens.
The crops that I want to talk about in my article can be grown not only in the Kuban, but also in the Urals and Siberia.
How refreshing blueberries taste good! It is a pity that the collection time is very short, and already in August it is difficult to find a good berry curtain in the forest.
This is where it will help out Saraha Edulis - a new nightshade crop, whose fruits taste like this wild berry.
Saraha is native to South America and is similar to nightshade. It is a small (up to 30 cm) herbaceous spreading, reclining bush. Its stem in each internode branches into 2 shoots, and in the places of the forks peculiar single flowers up to 1 cm in diameter of a beautiful yellow-green color are formed. It is for them that they distinguish the saraha from the wild nightshade - the weed.
Its unripe berries are tasteless, stick poorly on the branches, and when ripe, they crumble, therefore, independent seedlings of sarakh are often possible next year. They resemble wild blueberries in shape and taste, but numerous small seeds give this berry a soft, pleasant nutty flavor. Sarakha grows both in the open field and in the greenhouse. But in a rainy, cold summer under the shelter of the berries are sweeter and more aromatic.
In a temperate climate, it is better to grow a shed through seedlings, since it takes 100-120 days from germination to harvesting the first ripe fruits. The seeds are sown in mid-March. Growing conditions and land are needed the same as for tomatoes.
From the moment of the formation of two cotyledons to the first true leaf, the temperature is reduced (at night to 10 ... 12 ° C, in the daytime to 15 ... 16 ° C), and the seedlings are illuminated. In saraha, adventitious roots grow very easily, and in order for the plants to take root faster, when diving, they transfer it into large pots and plant it in a permanent place, deepening the stems of the lower leaf. By the way, stepchildren can easily root directly into the soil under the foil cover, and you can quickly propagate the culture with just a few bushes of seedlings.
1 m2 place 4-5 plants. They do not need support, but to make it convenient to pick berries, it is advisable to tie the stems to the pegs. Sarakha is slightly affected by late blight and pests, but it dies from frost (-3 ... -5 ° C), therefore, in order to accelerate ripening, it is better to remove all lateral shoots below the first fork, and pinch the tops in early August. Sarakha blooms and bears fruit until the frost, giving about a kilogram of berries from the bush. They can decorate desserts, just eat them fresh or make compote, jam.
In addition to saraha, I have been growing other plants from this abundant family for more than a year:
Tsifomandra - a perennial plant, it is also called the tomato tree. This is an evergreen fast-growing tree with large (up to 40 cm) leaves. The fruits are similar to a chicken egg, edible, sweet and sour taste.
They are eaten raw. They are ideal for making soft drinks, jams, etc. In the summer they grow well in the open field, for the winter they need to be brought into the room. I have two species of this plant growing - with red and yellow fruits. It begins to bear fruit when sown with seeds for 3-4 years. Plant up to 3 meters high.
Tsifomandra rope (tomarilo) is a tomato tree native to Peru. The plant is up to 2 m high, the leaves are large, up to 50 cm, pubescent. The flowers are white, fragrant, collected in a brush. The fruits are similar in size and shape to a chicken egg, red, taste sweet and sour with bitterness, resemble a tomato. They are consumed raw and processed. The plant can be affected by the Colorado potato beetle, its seeds are small, unlike the previous species.
Naranjilla Queen of the Andes
Naranjilla Queen of the Andes - the plant is very prickly and pubescent, needs a large feeding area (1 plant per 1.5 m).
It looks extremely attractive, the size of the leaf blade in protected ground reaches 90 cm in length and 80 cm in width.
The fruits are pubescent, yellow, the size of a large orange, the internal structure resembles a tomato, the pulp is green, juicy with pineapple-strawberry taste and smell, sour, very rich in vitamins. Suitable for food after complete softening after 120-130 days.
Pepino Consuelo - a new crop for protected ground with fruits that have an exquisite melon-strawberry aroma. Fruits are egg-shaped, weighing up to 750 g, of green-violet color with small blueberry strokes.
Cuban cherry (nightshade abutiloides) is a perennial, if planted through seedlings, then by the end of summer a beautiful small tree will grow with large clusters of "potato" light purple flowers and round fruits of bright orange, and by the end of summer - red.
The plant is quite decorative, medicinal, for the winter it must be transplanted into a pot and brought into the room.
Solyanum Ethiopicum (golden eggs) - its homeland is Central Africa, the plant is up to 1 m high, the leaves are lobed, pubescent, similar to eggplant. Fruits are obovate, ribbed, up to 80 g, ripe - bright orange, taste like eggplant and are used in the same way.
Nightshade yellow - bush up to 50 cm, spreading, small leaves, numerous white flowers, small fruits, when ripe - yellow, sweet.
Nightshade black (American) - an annual herb, fruits are usually black, less often green, spherical.
Bittersweet nightshade - perennial climbing plant. Fruits are bright red, multi-seeded, ovoid, bitter in taste. They have a medicinal effect on bronchitis, whooping cough, edema, are diuretic and anthelmintic.
Solyanum walker-leaved - an annual powerful thorny plant, quite original and decorative. The flowers are light purple, like those of a potato, but much larger, producing a large yield of red, like tomatoes, fruits the size of a plum. The fruits are edible, they are consumed both fresh and processed.
Sunberry - a miracle berry, a powerful plant, abundantly fertile up to 2 m high, grown like a tomato, not affected by any diseases. A complex hybrid of black nightshade with other species native to North America. The berries are round, black, large, collected in large clusters, each with 10-15 berries.
This berry has a number of medicinal properties. It cures sore throat, hypertension, polyarthritis, neuroses, heart failure, skin diseases, heals from boils, scrofula, lichen, itching, gout, etc., increases vitality. To do this, you need to pick the berries, spread them out in a thin layer and dry them in the shade.
Solyanum false-transverse The red giant is a small shrub up to 35 cm high. In autumn, cherry-like berries of red and coral color ripen on it, which remain on the plant all winter.
Solyanum anthropophagorum (nightshade of cannibals) - from the island of Fiji. The bush is up to 1 m high, the fruits are also red and look like tomatoes, their weight is small - up to 70 g, but there are at least 7 fruits in the brush. This variety has an interesting sign - a light piquant bitterness, which is easily removed by soaking the fruit, if this bitterness is not to someone's taste.
Solyanum karipense (tzimbalo) - from South America, bush height up to 1 m, medium-sized leaves, strongly dissected, numerous white flowers up to 1 cm in diameter, collected in a brush up to 30 pcs. Fruits up to 2 cm, white with purple stripes, ripe - yellow, taste like pepino, but sweeter. The plant is very fast-growing and fruitful, the fruits are stored for a long time.
Solyanum ovikular (Lobular nightshade) - originally from Australia, a bush up to 1.5 m tall, the leaves are dark green, strongly dissected, shiny. Purple flowers up to 3 cm in diameter, collected in large clusters up to 10 pcs.
Fruits up to 2 cm, pear-shaped, ripe - orange. Taste like a loquat. The plant is very fruitful and decorative, it has a long fruiting. It takes a long time to grow, you need to germinate in a wet rag.
I sow the seeds of these crops in mid-March, and plant them in open ground after the June frosts or under a film shelter. All nightshade plants are very productive, therefore, they require a garter to the stakes. I grow them with great pleasure, try it and you will do these wonders - it's very interesting!
I offer seeds of the plants described above, as well as Physalis Gold Placer, Strawberry, Vegetable Confectioner, Kinglet, Pineapple, Plum Jam, Bellflower, Peruvian Columbus, Florida Philanthropist, as well as a large selection of tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, eggplants (including rare ), cucumbers, pumpkins, onions, garlic and more.
Anyone who is interested in these plants, visit our online store semenabrizhan.ru/shop, or call: +7 (861) 646-28-76, Valery Ivanovich Brizhan, (from 16:00 to 18:00 and from 08: 00 to 09:00 Moscow time)
experienced gardener, Krasnodar Territory