As anyone who is anyone knows, the BFG (Big Friendly Giant) eats snozzcumbers. Because he refuses to eat people (human beans) he has to eat lots and lots of snozzcumbers. The snozzcumber is a giant vegetable, watery and bitter, but the BFG has a tasty drink called frobscottle to help wash them down.
And everyone knows that the snozzcumber varies from nine to twelve feet long. It has black and white stripes, and warts all over its surface.
What nobody knows is that, many years ago, human scientists took the snozzcumber and bred smaller versions that can be grown in the garden. These mini-snozzcumbers are much tastier than the giant snozzcumbers, but in order to convince people to eat them the scientists gave them a new name, and didn’t tell people they were mini-snozzcumbers.
But I can now reveal the secret – but only to you, and you’re not to tell anyone! If you want to grow mini-snozzcumbers in your garden, you have to buy courgette plants or seeds, because that’s what the scientists called them.
There are lots of different sorts of courgettes, some of which look more like their snozzcumber relatives than others. There are stripy ones and plain green ones, yellow ones and round ones, warty ones and smooth ones. In my garden this year I have yellow, warty, bottle-shaped mini-snozzcumbers, and they are very tasty indeed.
Mini-snozzcumbers are very easy to grow. Once you have chosen which one you want, sow your seeds in April in little pots of compost indoors. Water them, and keep them warm, and soon the snozzcumbers will start to grow. In June, when the nights are warm, you can plant your snozzcumbers out in the garden (and if you buy plants, not seeds, this is when you plant them out).
Although these are mini-snozzcumbers, they still grow very large and you need to make sure each plant has enough space to grow – at least a metre in each direction. Make sure to water your plant if it doesn’t rain, and soon each plant will grow big yellow flowers.
Some of the flowers will start to grow into snozzcumbers. They will be very small at first, but see how fast they grow! Take a ruler and measure them every day and you will be amazed at how fast they’re growing.
Now, the secret to growing tasty mini-snozzcumbers is to pick them and eat them before they get too large. The larger they get, the more they taste like the giant snozzcumbers, and the less nice they are to eat. But don’t worry – if you pick all of the mini-snozzcumbers while they’re young, your plant will grow some more.
Mini-snozzcumbers grow very fast, so unless you want to eat them all day, every day (like the BFG!), then you only need one or two plants. At the end of the summer, when the nights get colder again, the snozzcumber plants will die, but by then you will have had enough snozzcumbers for one year! Put the plants on the compost heap, and they will rot down into compost over the winter. Next spring, when it’s time to plant the snozzcumber seeds again, you’ll have some lovely snozzcumber compost to feed them with!