This is the Trellis Summer. Sun gold tomatoes at home and in our classroom bed find bambooed support culled from an invasion in the school’s wildlife habitat fit for a family of pandas. Ladders of hemp twine scale vertical bamboo cuts, which (so far) supply enough structure for the bite-sized alkaline orbs. But it’s the honeydew I’m worried about.
Yesterday I took the advice of a longtime Grassroots School staffer about pollinating honeydew. It’s funny how few female flowers there are on any given vine. Three plants creep up the trellis scattered with yellow blooms, but to date, I’ve only found two females, identified by downy emerald oblongs behind the petals.
If honeybees are scarce, pull the petals off a male flower to expose the stamen. For backyard IVF, brush the pollen onto the center of the female, then cross your fingers.
The most amazing part of the honeydew experience is the level of unconscious tenacity.
Tendrils ensnare everything within curly reach.
This one pulled a chunk of paint off the house!