THIS summer the humble cucumber is getting a makeover by an innovative company which knows a thing or two about gourds.
Hendrick’s Gin has launched a campaign to create a brand new variety of garnishing cucumber – The Unusually Australian Cucumber.
In the past few weeks avid fans of the Scottish tipple – made with rose petals and cucumber – have voted on a range of inputs that will now foster the creation of hundreds of cucumbers that will ultimately be available to the public to garnish their hard-earned gin and tonics.
Those who engaged in Hendrick’s horticultural quest were faced with three difficult choices.
They had to decide the creature whose poo would fertilise the seeds: the emu or kangaroo; second, the water-dweller which would add their crusty charm: Moreton Bay Bug shells or yabby shells, and third, the soil that would make the best growing medium: Broken Hill soil or Simpson Desert soil.
After much online commentary the inputs decided upon included emu poo, yabby shells and Simpson Desert soil.
These ingredients will now be sprinkled on young cucumber seeds at a purpose-built greenhouse at the University of Sydney.
Pro-dean of the faculty of agriculture and environment and expert cucumberist, professor Robyn McConchie, will oversee the growing process.
"To develop a unique cucumber variety cultivated with Australian ingredients is a testimony to the innovation of Hendrick’s,” Professor McConchie said.
“It's never been done before, and we're excited to be part of it."
The interactive marketing campaign was dreamt up by Sydney-based advertising agency Lavender.
Lavender’s executive creative director Marco Eychenne was excited about the first harvest.
“We're hoping the cucumbers will pick up some unusual characteristics,” Mr Eychenne said.
- Stay up to date on how these iconic cucumbers are progressing by following www.facebook.com/hendricksgin