It’s always neat to check out the seedling and planting areas here on the urban homestead. You’ll never know what Farmer D & J, both plant addicts, have smuggled in. With our 1/10 acre garden containing nearly 400 different varieties of plants one couldn’t possibly think we had room for more. Right? Wrong. Sure as the sun comes up, this year I spot some unusual edible plants hidden among the typical ones.

The plant that has gotten our attention the most, is this spiky beauty.

Jordanne’s dubbed it “the plant that bites.” You can’t go near that plant without those protruding throns giving you a nice little peck. 

Intrigued,  I ask Justin, what the heck is it?  A tomato?   He replies “Yep, it’a a tomato relative alright.”  Some tomato I’d say.  Who’s going to pick the fruit?   I’d like to know.  Going to need some gloves that for sure.

Litchi Tomato 
(Solanum sysimbriifolium)  Also known as Morelle de Balbis. An intriguing eggplant relative. One-inch fruits are a cheerful clear scarlet in color and are enclosed in a prickly husk until fully ripe. At that time the husks obligingly split open and the sweet fruit comes away from the stem surprisingly easily. Thorny plants are ornamental in a gritty sort of way, reaching 4-5 feet in our conditions. White flowers are fairly showy.

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Plants for the Future

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  1. Janice K says:

    I’m sure you know this already, but found this info very fascinating:


    It’s used as a trap crop for potatoes. I just love how nature has a way to deal with pests! Why did anyone think it was a good idea to forget the natural means of pest control and take up chemical pesticides???

  2. Glynis says:

    I was growing some but realized they will get way too large for my current space and got rid of ’em. Still intrigued by the description of it’s taste though!

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