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Everyday Gardeners

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Da fruit is divine

I recently vacationed in Tuscany, Italy. Like most people who travel there, I became convinced that this is the coolest place on earth. The food, the wine, the vineyards and olive groves, the people….all  wonderful! (You don’t need to hear my vacation stories, but I couldn’t help saying that much. Oh, did I mention the wine?)

While there, I went to a street market and noticed ornamentals with berries or fruits were popular. It seems to be a trend over there. I hope it becomes a trend here, too. I noticed Pyracantha, Solanum, and Capsicum (below), among others and they were CUTE! Using plants with ornamental fruit is not a new idea, but definitely an underutilized one.

Pepper italy

A variegated pepper (of some sort) in a 4 inch pot.

When I find a source for this pepper (I think that’s what it is), I’ll let you know. Meanwhile, check out the seed catalogs. You’ll find several peppers and eggplants with really fun, ornamental fruits. This one from Park is fun.

Almost as fun as refilling a 2 gallon jug with a nice chianti for 7 Euros. At a hardware store. Someday I’m going to move there, I swear.

UPDATE: Denny says he thinks this is a Jerusalem cherry (Solanum pseudocapsicum). I think he’s right. Thanks Denny!

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