Thursday, June 15, 2006

Zucchini sex and more Rabbit tales

Zucchini flowers have appeared in the early morning, pretty and tasty, either raw or mixed with eggs. Late in the morning they have gone. Youth is fragile and fleeting.

They come in two sexes, and God's plan is that bees take the pollen from the males to the females while doing their own thing. Sometimes humans want full-grown zucchini faster than bees accomplish. Such a human can pick the male plant, nibble around the petals, and make sure the female has her male satisfaction. This human just did that today.

How do you tell which is male and which is female? There are generally more males than females, and they come sooner. They bloom on simple stems. The females have fetus zucchini sitting behind the blossom and they look – well -- more female. It takes about five days after sex therapy for the adult zucchini to be harvestable. I'm excited!

My tiny rabbit was (I think) considerably larger when I saw her about ten days later. She was in the inner garden again! I chased her around, and this time she ran up to the fence several times and turned back, the picture of panic. Finally, she squeezed between the fence and the "gate" that I had not firmly fastened at the bottom. I carefully fastened it to the fence, and I haven't seen her again. The "gate" is a foot high, so I step over it, but rabbits aren't supposed to be able to do that.

Meanwhile, while I was sitting reading on an old-fashioned chaise lounge with plastic webbing outside the garden, I saw a HUGE rabbit at a distance. It was about a foot long, not counting the head. I watched it in amazement, until I thought it was watching me. It's hard to be sure you are having eye contact with a rabbit. I tore my eyes away because I wanted to accomplish what I had set out to do.

It began coming toward me. Now I was sure we were looking at each other. It walked within a yard of the chair, and I felt a slight fear at this large critter -- a fear that amused me at the time. Then it hopped to maybe ten or fifteen feet away, turned around, and began coming toward me at a startling speed. I was even more amused at my even heightened fear. It ran under my chair and hit my bottom in an emphatic bounce upward that I could clearly feel through the plastic webbing.

Then it turned around, started to speed toward me again, and this time went under my legs, bouncing upward toward them so that my legs could feel the rabbit "hitting" them. I waited for more, but it turned around briefly to say goodbye, and then disappeared into a neighbor's yard.

The Easter bunny was back yesterday, looking startlingly normal compared to her small and large relatives. She just sat and looked at me from about six feet away for over ten minutes. I was surprised at how sad I felt when she left me. Rabbits are fun.


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