Grow your own fall decorations and craft items from the
Ornamental gourds can be divided into two major
botanical groups. They all belong to the Cucurbitaceae
(Cucurbit) family, which includes many types of squash and
pumpkins. The bright, multi-colored, thick-shelled, sometimes
warty types are of the Cucurbita genus (C. pepo). Cucurbita
gourds include such colorful types as the ‘Shenot Crown
of Thorns,’ smooth and warted pear, egg types, and winged
gourds. As a group, Cucurbita gourds have hard angular stems,
but a few winter squash types used as ornamentals have soft
corky stems, such as the ‘Turks Turban’ variety,
and belong to the Cucurbita maxima species. In general, the
types with hard stems tend to keep longer. The Cucurbita have
prickly leaves and stems, and yellow flowers.
The second group includes the hard, thin-shelled
“utility” bottle/birdhouse gourds belonging to the
Lagenaria genus. The Lagenarias have smooth stems; soft, large
leaves; and white flowers. The Lagenaria gourds are tan to
brown when mature with long, narrow hard stems and have many
distinct shapes and sizes. This includes such unique types as
the caveman’s club, calabash, dolphin (maranka), swan
gourd, Corsican flat, apple, drum, bottle, and small and large
Days to maturity will vary by species and variety, ranging
from 90 days from seed for the small Cucubita gourds to over
120 days for Lagenaria types. As the weather cools in the fall,
additional time in the field may be needed.
The Cucurbitaceae family is tropical and sub-tropical in
origin, and does not tolerate cold soils or cool growing
temperatures. Even a light frost will significantly damage
foliage and impede crop development. Planting should be delayed
until the late spring when soils have warmed. When making
planting date decisions, average fall frost date and marketing
period should be considered along with varietal days to
maturity. Proper timing of the planting to allow the crop to
mature before frost is of particular importance. These factors
should also be considered when making decisions to direct seed
or transplant the crop in the field.
Both species have sprawling growth habits and require room
to spread. Lagenaria types readily climb by long twining
tendrils, and are often grown supported by a trellis. All
cucurbits are monecious (separate male and female flowers on
the same plant), and require insects (bees) to transfer pollen
and to set fruit. Night-flying moths are also known to
Lagenarias have a long growing season and need early
planting to mature by the end of the season. Otherwise a large
percentage of fruit will be green at first frost. In comparison
to Cucurbita types, Lagenarias are more sensitive to cold, and
more adapted to consistent warm weather conditions. Soils
should be at least 65°F prior to planting. To speed growth
and development, use transplants instead of direct seeding.
Lagenarias are vigorous growers and develop large plants.
Vines may reach 20 to 30 feet in length. Rows should be 10 to
15 feet apart, with plants set five to six feet apart in the
row. Because of the price of seed and their vigor, multi-plant
hills are not recommended. The above spacing will require 500
to 700 plants or seeds per acre. For the bottle and dipper
types, trellising will allow fruit to hang, resulting in a
straight neck. If allowed to grow on the ground, the fruit will
curve in various directions.
The ideal soil pH is in the range of 6.5 to 7.0. A soil test
should be conducted to determine available phosphorous (P),
potassium (K), and magnesium (Mg) levels. Low P and K soils
require amendment to increase levels of these nutrients to
moderate levels per soil test standards. As a starter
fertilizer, at least 50 pounds of P and 100 pounds of K per
acre should be applied in most soils. Gourds are sensitive to
low levels of Mg, and soils should test to 100 to 125 pounds
per acre of this nutrient. If not, Mg should also be
supplemented preplant. Because of significant vine and leaf
growth, gourds respond to fertile soils and applied nitrogen
(N). At planting apply 50 to 60 pounds of N per acre along with
P, K, and Mg amendments. Vines will begin to run or spread in
three to five weeks after planting. An additional side dressing
of 30 to 40 pounds of N per acre should be applied to keep
plants vigorous. With drip irrigation, supplemental N can be
injected and split-applied at two- to three-week intervals. By
late summer, nutrients and water should be reduced. This will
permit plants to slow growth and recently set fruits to mature
and harden off.
Supplemental irrigation on both tilled and no-till fields
can be beneficial during dry periods and increases yields.
Irrigation should supplement rainfall with an average of one to
two inches per week. Water should be withheld during the end of
the season to hasten maturity.
For small-scale plantings, Lagenaria gourds will respond to
vine pruning by increasing the number lateral shoots (runners)
and of female flowers that develop into fruit. Vines should be
tipped back once with a mower or by hand when they reach eight
to ten feet in length.
Average yields for the small Cucurbita gourds will be from
20,000 to 30,000 fruit per acre. For the Lagenarias, expect a
range of 2,000 to 5,000 gourds per acre.
To assure quality, timely harvest and proper handling and
curing are necessary. Cucurbita gourds are frost sensitive when
mature, and should be harvested before the first predicted
frost event in the fall. Full-color development, and the drying
and hardening of the stem and outer skin are harvest
indicators. Immature gourds willnot cure well, and are best
left in the field. Harvested fruit with spots of decay or
damage or that are too immature should be sorted and discarded.
Depending on planting date, a range of fruit maturity is
typical, as plants will continually set new fruit over the
season. Where days to maturity are observed, a large percentage
of fruit should be mature on the vine before frost; a few may
have passed ideal harvest stages.
At maturity, Lagenaria gourds will begin to change from
bright green to pale green and eventually to tan. The stem will
also become more rigid and dry. In contrast to the Cucurbita
types, once fruit has reached a mature- or firm-green stage,
with proper curing they will usually dry without decay or
shrinkage. Some of the Lagenaria types, such as the speckled
swan gourds are harvested green and are marketed in a timely
manner similar to Cucurbitas. If the season allows, it is best
to leave them in the field until they are as near to maturity
as possible. Frost may affect the final tan color, surface
pattern, and seed viability, but not the shell integrity of a
Harvest all gourds with one to two inches of stem intact. An
intact stem enhances value. Care should be taken not to bruise
or scrape them, and always clip, not tear the fruit from the
vine. Freshly harvested gourds can be washed in warm, soapy
water, using a soft brush to clean warty types. A light
pressure rinse may suffice, followed by a dip in clean water
with a household disinfectant, rubbing alcohol, or a light
bleach solution (1 percent to 2 percent). This step is
important to reduce fungi and bacteria on the surface that can
find entry through surface injuries.
Both types are cured under similar conditions; however, the
Lagenaria group requires several months to cure before it can
be utilized while the Cucurbita group needs only a few weeks to
properly cure for use. When cured properly, Lagenarias will
last for many years; the Cucurbita types six to nine months
before the colors begin to fade.
Curing is a two-step process, involving a short period for
surface drying, and a second, longer internal curing period.
Surface drying hardens the outer skin and sets the colors for
the Cucurbita types. Spread out cleaned gourds on a screen or
newspapers in a well-ventilated, partially sunny area, and turn
them regularly. Discard any that shrivel or develop soft spots.
Surface drying can take from a few days to a week.
Gourds can also be cut from plants and initially left to dry
in the field. This is often done with Lagenaria types.
Uncleaned, field-dried gourds should be rinsed and wiped down
with a disinfectant solution before continuing with internal
curing. Harvest bins, packing boxes and shipping crates are not
advisable places for curing, as lack of air movement will
result in rotted gourds.
Internal curing requires a warm (80°F), low-light, and
dry location. Warmth encourages rapid drying, darkness prevents
color fading, and dry conditions discourage mold. Artificial
heat can be used, but without ventilation it can lead to faster
mold development. A well-placed fan can help speed the process.
Cucurbita gourds will need an additional two to four weeks to
final cure, while Lagenaria species may take up to three months
to fully cure; longer if they were green at harvest. Seeds
rattling inside indicate the gourd is fully dry. Prior to
shipping or display in the market, sort cured Cucurbita gourds
one last time for decay, as potentially immature fruit may have
been harvested in the rush to beat frost or get them to
During curing of Lagenaria, it is common to see mold growing
across the surface. The mold can leave desirable, unique
patterns as it breaks down the waxes and upper skin layers, yet
the fruit wall integrity is not diminished. Lagenaria gourds
are highly resistant to decay and to an extent can be exposed
to the elements and variable temperatures.
Long-term winter exposure can result in cracking and weaken
gourds and is not advised. At a minimum, these gourds should be
stored in a barn or well-ventilated shed. Regular wiping with
alcohol or a light bleach solution can discourage mold growth
if a solid tan color is desired for these types.
Following curing, gourds can be waxed, lacquered, or painted
to extend their life and improve appearance. For colored
cucurbita types, well-cured gourds may last three to four
months without this treatment while coating with wax or varnish
will extend storage life and color retention to six to eight
months. Paste wax will provide a soft luster to the gourd,
while varnish or lacquer adds a hard, glossy shine. Dip waxes
used for fruit such as apples and oranges can also be used on
gourds to extend life, and some commercial buyers require this
Gourds can be sanded smooth and painted as well, which can
greatly extend the life of the Lagenaria types used outdoors,
such as for a birdhouse. Often they are painted gold or silver
for table displays.
Lagenaria types have many utilitarian uses. The crook-necked
types can be cut into dippers and scoops; the larger drum
gourds used as storage vessels. For birdhouses, drill a small
hole through the top for a hanging cord. On the side, cut a
hole large enough to accommodate wrens, barn swallows, or other
small birds. Shake out the dried seeds. A small hole drilled in
the bottom will help drain any rainwater that finds its way
into the house. These natural-gourd birdhouses can last for
You can save seeds from grourds, but they do cross
pollinated very easily, to ensure that seed is true, isolation
or blocking of the planting by variety should be practiced to
limit crosspollination potential. One of the best methods to
ensure true seed is to directly hand-pollinate selected flowers
as they open, with a known pollen source.
Use a ribbon, flag, or other marker to keep track of these
fruit through the harvest period. Fruits should be fully mature
before seeds are extracted. Separate seeds from the pulp and
spread in a thin layer on cloth or newspaper until dry. Store
seed in a cool, dry place. Under ideal conditions seed may
remain viable for three to five years.
RGS149 Harvest Bowl Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Also know as Tobacco Box Gourd and Basket Gourd, this plant produces good yields of round bowl shaped gourds that have unlimited crafting possibilities. 70 days.
RGS009 Nest Egg Gourd ( Cucurbita pepo )
Beautiful, white oblong small gourds resembling eggs. Great for
painting and decorations. They are sometimes used to fool
setting hens into laying.
RGS152 Large Kentucky Bushel Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A large variety that can grow 18-24" in diameter, even to 30" sometimes. We have seen larger, this is about the norm in good soil, to get largest gourds, remove all but one or two gourds per plant. Has a good hard shell for crafting. Not quite as large as the 100 pound bushel gourd, but this one makes a very consistent harvest.
RGS041 Big Apple Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Looks very much like a big green apple reaching 5-7" across.
Dries well and has great potential for crafts.
RGS143 Yugoslavian Fingers ( Cucurbita pepo )
100 Days. This is a most unique and unusual gourd! Large,
slightly oval, like a very large egg with 8-10 fingers jutting
out from the top, that form wings or ribs on the sides of the
fruit. The cream colored fruit most closely resemble a very
large Crown of Thorns gourd. An excellent ornamental type for
fall decoration and marketing.
RGS144 Daisy Gourd ( Cucurbita pepo )
95 Days. Mixed colors of green, orange, yellow and white with
most having a unique daisy pattern look on the stem end. The
small gourds measure 2.5-3" high by 3" wide. Recommened 1.5-2'
spacing in row and 6' between rows. It will yield better if it
is not over populated.
1A248 Blister Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
New and unusual. 110 days. Apple shaped fruit covered in warts,
weight 4-7 lbs. and measuring 9 x 12 inches when mature,
excellent fall decoration. Larger and more warted than bule
RGS002 Bottle Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
The legendary bulb shaped gourd used so widely for decorations.
Dries to a buff brown.
RGS162 Giant Bottle Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
This is the largest bottle gourd we have ever grown. Standard bottle gourds may reach 16" tall in good conditions, this one reaches 24" tall regularly!
After the mature fruit has dried and the seeds are removed, this bottle gourd can be used as a container or for decorative purposes. The plant requires a long, warm growing season. For ornamental use only. 90 days.
RGS160 Chinese Bottle Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
These pear shaped gourds grow about 5 inches tall by 4 inches across. It has a flat bottom, making it an excellent craft gourd. The Chinese Bottle Gourd is used by many cultures around the world for many different purposes (food, drink, container, garment, healing).
RGS159 India Long Hybrid ( Lagenaria siceraria )
This high quality hybrid bottle gourd is developed by a leading seed company in India and has become one of the most popular gourds in the markets in India and Southern Asia. The cylindrical shape straight fruit has light green skin, up to 2 feet in length and 5 Lbs. in weight. The plant is very vigorous and prolific in bearing fruits. This variety is suitable for growing all year round in subtropical and tropical areas.
RGS003 Spoon Gourd ( Cucurbita pepo )
Colorful. Small ball at one end perfect for hollowing out to
use as a spoon.
RGS004 Penguin Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A favorite with craftsmen, 12 inches long by 5 inches wide.
RGS006 Shenot Crown of Thorns ( Cucurbita maxima )
Upright spikes give this unusual plant a crown-like appearance.
Colors range through cream, yellow, orange and green, some
RGS007 Small Flat Striped ( Cucurbita pepo )
Flattened oval, with white to yellow with dark green stripes.
RGS008 Orange Gourd ( Cucurbita pepo )
Round, smooth bright orange 2+ to 3" gourds, perfect for fall
RGS010 Long Handle Dipper Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Beautiful gourd with curved long handle, used for dippers in
the past and for birdhouses in the present.
RGS013 Turk's Turban ( Cucurbita maxima )
Large Aladdin type gourd. Bright red-orange turban with white
and green cap.
RGS014 Miniature Turk's Turban ( Cucurbita maxima )
A very attractive miniature version of the famous Turk's
RGS015 Speckled Swan ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Smooth, dark green/mottled cream. Curved neck, swan head
shaped. Should be picked when young for best shape and
RGS018 Striped Crown of Thorns ( Cucurbita pepo var.
Multi-colored, striped version of the Crown of Thorns.
RGS020 Cave Man's Club ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Knobby, long handled club shaped gourd.
RGS112 Dinosaur ( Lagenaria siceraria )
This variety from Seed Savers is very similar to the Caveman's Club we
offer, but seems to have a longer neck and maybe smaller bulb.
Given to SSE years ago by a Cherokee member from Louisiana.
Traditionally used to decorate sweat lodges. Solid-green fruits
have curved necks and wing-like projections, perfect for
gourdcraft swans. Total length of 18-24" with an 8" bowl and
unique serpentine projections. Straight necks if grown on a
trellis. 125 days.
RGS021 Powder Horn ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Much like the calabash gourd, but usually more powder horn
RGS022 Long Siphon ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Extra long 36 inch hollow handle with 10 inch diameter ball
RGS023 Water Jug ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Huge gourd with hourglass shape, very ornamental.
RGS128 Koshare Yellow Banded Gourd ( C. pepo )
Koshare Spoon is an exciting new gourd with a unique appearance
and a superior plant habit for better production. Maturing in
95-100 days, vigorous multi-stem bush plants permit higher
populations and a more concentrated set. Both total yield and
ease of harvest are improved.
Koshare fruit are about 4.5 inches long and very uniform in
shape. An assortment of banding patterns of vibrant dark green
and golden yellow are produced on each plant. Because
temperature during flower development affects fruit coloration,
solid green fruit and fruit with 2-5 bands of alternating color
are produced. Koshare can stand alone or be a handsome addition
to small gourd mix. It’s color retention is excellent,
enduring long after other gourds have faded away. Koshare Spoon
is an absolute must for any serious gourd grower.
RGS029 Birdhouse Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A ball shaped gourd with a long neck, very popular for creating
RGS030 Orange Warted ( C. pepo )
Small orange gourd covered with warts. Good fall
RGS032 Miniature Bottle Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A lovely decorative gourd with the same shape as the familiar
bottle gourd, but only half the size.
RGS033 Pear Bicolor ( C. pepo )
Pear shaped hard and smooth fruit with lower half green, upper
half yellow to buff.
RGS094 Basket Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A slightly smaller size gourd than the bushel, with a more rounded basket shape. Green
weight is about 20 lbs, this is the perfect size gourd for novelty baskets and decorations.
RGS168 Green Bell Hybrid ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Green Bell is a new high quality hybrid variety developed by Kaoshung Horticulature
Research Center in Taiwan, resulted from ten year's development efforts. Fruits with
green skin and white stripes, in bell shape and 1.5 Lb. in weight are very delicious and
tasty, excellent for soup and stir-fry. Plants grow very well in subtropical climates, 80-90
F, in full sun conditions. This variety starts to produce female flowers on secondary
branches and first fruit harvest can be obtained 70-80 days after transplanting. Plants are
vigorous and tolerant to disease attacks. Very productive and easy to grow.
RGS153 Sugar Bowl ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Produces round gourds with flattened tops and bottoms averaging about 8 to 10 inches
wide by 4 to 5 inches tall, that are ideal for making bowls or gift baskets, each gourd
when divided will make two bowls. Well suited for crafting.
RGS034 Bushel Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Kettle shaped fruits growing to 16 to 20 inches wide, makes wonderful
baskets or containers. Very limited supply of seeds.
RGS051 Martin House Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
The favorite of all gourds for making birdhouses. Similar to
small kettle gourd with large bulb on bottom and tapered stem
RGS035 Canteen Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A new type of ornamental gourd with a unique canteen/wheel
shape. Excellent ornamental appeal.
RGS109 Ten Commandments ( C. pepo )
Softball sized fruits have five pairs of protruding prongs that
point towards the blossom end. Nice mixture of bright striped,
mottled, multicolored fruits. 95 days.
RGS110 Bule ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A rare French heirloom that is shaped like an 8" Big Apple
gourd, but these are covered in attractive warts. They are very
ornamental and make a good market item.
RGS095 Tennessee Dancing, Spinning Gourd ( C. pepo )
A tiny gourd just 2" long! They are bottle shaped and green and
white striped- turning tan when dry. This unique heirloom used
to be popular with school children in years gone by, kids would
bring 'em to play with. Dancing gourds spin just like a top,
they make great toys, superb crafts, arrangements, and much
Many large seed companies have their own unique mix of
gourd seeds, we have picked out some of our favorites:
TRM797 Hedgehog Gourd ( Cucumis dipsaceus )
This member of the cucumber family from eastern Africa grows long, thin shoots with large leaves and small, yellow flowers, followed by very pretty yellow fruits that are covered in hundreds of thin, soft spines. Not edible but very ornamental and great for decoration.
RGS161 Gremlins Mix ( Cucurbita pepo )
Large, colorful, warted collection.
Gremlins are bright, bold, and crazy with warts. Small to medium-sized (5-7"+) gourds with various solid and speckled vibrant colors, in a multitude of shapes: stars, wings, acorns, mushrooms, necks, and more.
RGS026 Small Warted Mixture
A mixture of favorite small warted gourds in an exceptional
array of colors and shapes including bi-colors for craft
RGS027 Small Mixture
Beautiful patterns, sizes, shapes and colors. Small fruits are
fine for table decorations, fresh or dried.
RGS028 Large Mixture
Various sizes for birdhouses, dippers and other crafting
RGS012 Small Fruited Mix
Wonderful blend of types for drying and ornamental uses. Mostly
C. pepo varieties.
SF073 Weird Warted Pro Mix ( Cucurbita Pepo Mix )
With a fantastic array of shapes, patterns, and colors, this wildly warted gourd mix is great fun for the family garden, and a high demand item for market. Originally created for the packing trade, with a more uniform smaller size than some mixes, with flats, rounds, pears, and spoons in solids, stripes, and bicolors all included. 80-95 Days.
RGS125 Goblin Eggs Mixture
Delightful mix of egg-shaped gourds, great for holiday
displays. Goblin Eggs Mix Gourds are uniform size; fast to
mature. 80 Days.
RGS158 Autumn Wing Swan Mix ( Cucurbita pepo )
The Autumn Wings blend is a very unique gourd series that offers many colors and patterns on fruit that have wings on the bulb end. This formulated mix includes approximately 50% medium size wing gourds and 25% each of small wings and large wings. Of course this will vary slightly from pack to pack.
All the sizes have a winged bulb that is approximately 2.5-3" in diameter. The small size has a 4 - 5" long neck; the medium size has a 6" long neck; the large size has a 12" long neck. Many of the fruit will also be warted. You should plant this mix early so that the gourds can fully mature before harvest. Immature wings on the gourds are easily damaged and can break off or rot. 100 days.
RGS166 Harvest Flowers Hybrid Mix
An awesome collection of ornamental gourds with flower patterns. As many colors, shapes and patterns as one can imagine. 90-110 days.
RGS167 Monster Hybrid Mix
Bush plants produce all colors: orange, yellow, white and green gourds. These un-edible fruits range from 4 to 12 ounces and are bumpy, lumpy and winged. 95 days.
RGS130 Little Guys Mix
Seeds from Harris Seed Company. 95 Days. The delightful bright
colors and interesting varied shapes of this improved small
fruited mixture will add a nice touch for fall decorations. It
includes Orange, Pear, Apple, Crown of Thorns, bicolor and
striped types, spoon, warted varieties and others. Little Guys
includes a greater variety selection than competing
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RGS111 Seed Saver's Mix
The finest mix of small-fruited ornamental gourds available to
gardeners. Guaranteed not to disappoint. Excellent formula
mixture that includes Cou-Tors Hative, Orange Warted, Ten
Commandments, Nest Egg, Flat Striped, Striped Pear, Orange Ball
and Warted Gourds. Moneymaker for roadside stands and
farmers’ markets during Halloween and Thanksgiving.
RGS114 Johnny's Harrowsmith Mix
This handsome selection of mixed gourds was developed by Jim
Harvey, a grower and Johnny's customer from Massachusetts. A
mix of mostly warted pears, dumplings, patty pans, cheeses and
other shapes in a diverse range of colors. Mr. Harvey
continually refined and selected Harrowsmith over a 20 year
period until he arrived at the wonderful mix we now offer.
Kudos and thanks to Mr. Harvey.
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1A241 Rupp's Galaxy of Stars F1 Mix
An exciting new Rupp hybrid gourd mixture developed by our
Plant Breeder, Duane Bell. Galaxy of Stars are in the shape of
a 5 point star, with many colors and can be mechanically
washed. An excellent opportunity to have an entire new gourd
product for table decorations this year.
The snake gourd is really a quick developing vine that, a long time before being grown, was ingested by the residents of the regions exactly where it grew untamed. Today it's a relatively well-known veggie utilized in numerous standard recipes. They are often simple to find in Asian grocery shops while in season. It is really an annual climber with increased or even much less palmate, 2 or 3 lobed or even somewhat wavy leaflets along with serrated edges.
RGS140 Harris Lunch Lady F1
A new additon from Harris Seed. 100 Days. Here is a
large-fruited gourd that will make a terrific addition to your
fall ornamental gourd offering. Large, vigorous vines produce
unique, large warted gourds that can weigh from 5-20 lbs each.
It produces an array of fruit sizes, shapes and colors, all
with hard shells and warts. A perfect fall novelty product for
roadside and farmer’s market sales.
Its flowers have got lengthy fringes on the petals, and although male flowers usually are carried in cluster, female flowers are individual. The bear delicious, strangely shaped fruit that appear to be just like coiled up snakes, or can be grown on a trellis to be long and straight. They're plain green or even grey-green becoming orange or red whenever ripe. Their rind is thin and also the flesh thick as well as juicy. Just like cucumbers, they include several little, flat, ovoid, as well as soft seeds that, once the fruit is ripe, turn out to be big and hard. They've got a fragile, fairly sweet flavor.
Snake gourd includes a large amount of water as well as fiber, only a number of calories. It really is abundant with proteins, vitamins A, B and C in addition to minerals (manganese, potassium, iron and iodine). It is just a diuretic that can help the organism by reducing its harmful particles. It features a relaxing impact on the bodily tissue; therefore calming inflammations.
Additionally, it features a positive as well as calming impact on the nervous system. It encourages the circulation of blood as well as contribution to cleaning the blood of toxins. Much like green beans, snake gourd is cut into pieces as well as cooked in boiling salted water for 5 to 10 minutes.
It may be served with a curry sauce, salads, vegetable soups, ragouts, or couscous. It may also be included with various other veggie, cooked along with tomatoes and onions, or combined with chopped meat or even chopped fish. The young shoots and leaves may also be consumed in salads or even stews.
Snake Gourd Seeds
RGS042 Indian Serpent Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
Actually an unusual cucumber with long, white speckled fruits
that resembles snakes. Long used in India and the orient as a
vegetable, quite delicious when young. Roots and seeds are also
used to expel worms and treat diarrhea and syphilis.
RGS005 Snake Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
A favorite from England. An Excellent climber with long,
curved, gray-green fruits that turn bright orange when
RGS169 White Glory Snake Gourd ( Trichosanthes anguina )
This unique snake gourd is a new hybrid developed and introduced recently by a leading seed company in Thailand. White skin fruits are about 15 inches long x 1-1/2 inch in diameter.
Plants grows vigorously in warm climates, suitable for subtropical weather with high rain. This vine plant is very profilic and first fruit picks can be obtained 45-50 days after sowing.
This variety is strongly tolerant to disease attacks, easy to grow.
RGS156 Thai Extra Long Hybrid Snake Gourd ( Trichosanthes anguina )
This is a new hybrid variety developed by a leading seed company in Thailand. Extra long fruit can reach 78 cm long with 3.6 cm in diameter, 370 grams in weight. Frutis skin is light green with white stripes. Plants grow vigorously in warm climates and very productive. For getting furits in straigh and long shape, plants are best grown along the high supports. Fruits can be harvested at any stage, from young to full size. Easy to grow.
The Loofah Gourd is a member of the Cucurbitaceae (
Gourd ) family. The Loofah is spelled several different ways,
i.e., Lofah, Luffa or Lufa. It's commonly known as the Washrag
Gourd. It is the only plant known that can be raised and used
as a sponge.
TRM798 Buag Ngu Snake Gourd ( Trichosanthes anguina )
This early ripening prolific variety is pest resistant and produces over a long season. The dark green and white striped fruit are 1" in diameter and grow up to 12" long. Popular in Indian, South Asian, and Southeast Asian cuisines.
The sponges are very versatile in that they can be used for
bathing, washing dishes or scrubbing. The Loofah is widely used
for bathing to invigorate the skin as well as gift giving and
It is a very fast growing annual that produce vines up to
twelve feet or more. I have seen them grow over 20 ft. high in
trees and produce dozens of gourds per plant.
When fully matured, you can peel off the dried and crisp outer
shell to expose the fibrous sponge. To clean your Loofah you
wash it in clean water and then soak it in a solution of bleach
and water and allow to dry in the sun. Loofah sponges will last
a long time if washed and allowed to dry after each use.
RGS031 Common Luffa Sponge
The ever popular dishcloth, bath sponge gourd. Should be grown
3319 Oriental Hybrid Extra Long
Young fruits are eaten, fruit left to mature on the vine can be used for luffa sponges. This unique hybrid luffa produces extra long fruits, 33 inches long and 2-3 inches wide in size and over a pound in weight. Plants are very vigorous and strongly resistant to heat,cold, rain and wind. This variety is very productive, yielding high quality fruits which are good for long distance shipping and marketing. One of the most popular varieties in the Orient.
Edible Gourd Varieties
TRM602 Opo Long Bottle Gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria )
This cylindrical bottle gourd has flesh that is sweet, tender, and delicious when harvested young. The fruits have a smooth, light green skin, and mature to about 12 to 15" long. Very productive plants. 70-75 days.
TRM603 Bonanza Edible Luffa ( Luffa acutangula )
Also know as Chinese okra, this variety is a vigorous productive plant that produces a high yield of edible fruit on strong, lateral branches. Fruit are 18” long, 2” in diameter and weigh just under a pound. The green-colored, ridged fruit is tender and tasty and matures 45 days after the flower sets. 70-75 days.
Hairy Gourds ( Fuzzy Gourd, Mao Qwa )
Mao Qwa is a smaller version of Tong Qwa and is often called Little Winter Melon. Fruits are in cylinder shape of about 2-3 inches in diameter, with hairy green skin, and are picked for vegetable use when young. The white flesh is firm and mildly flavored. Plants are trained up along supports and should be well watered during hot summer.
Unique, Rare Gourd Types
TRM776 Fingerleaf Gourd ( Cucurbita digitata )
A native North American vine, distributed from the south-central and southwestern US to northern Mexico, where it generally grows at low elevations, in dry and sandy areas. Cucurbita digitata has dark green, palmate leaves with long, thin, finger-like segments that have a conspicuous, whitish midrib. The star-shaped yellow flowers are followed by round, longitudinally striped, dark-green fruits, containing white, edible seeds, which can be roasted and eaten as a snack. Hardy to USDA Zone 7.
RLP056 Wild Calabash ( Lagenaria sphaerica )
A pretty climber in the pumpkin family with rigid, palmate leaves and fragrant, white flowers followed by mottled green, spherical fruits. It produces a perennial, woody rootstock that puts out many slender, annual shoots that can reach to about 10 m long. It is found in a number of dry scrub and woodland habitats in tropical and southern Africa, including Madagascar and the Comores. It has a number of applications in traditional medicine and for religious purposes and makes a wonderful ornamental.
TR02 Vine and Veggie Trellis Net
5' x 10' lovely green textile trellis for garden and yard use. Excellent for beans, gourds, cucumbers and vining flowers.
chart © Dan Dunkin 2003
This chart is used courtesy The Gourd Reserve
New! Jim's Plant Growth Stimulator for Gourds.
Jim has developed this product through years of testing on his
farms. This natural, environmentally safe solution will produce
amazing results, producing vigorous plants and larger fruits.
We highly recommend you do you own trial test ( i.e. spray one
plant with solution, next to a plant not sprayed with solution
over the length of a growing season ) to fully appreciate how
effective this product is.
This is a two part water soluble product that should be mixed
14.75cc of each part ( we provide measuring spoon with solution ) to one gallon of water and sprayed onto the foliage of the
gourd plants. It contains Food Grade
( produced by nature ) Gibberellic Acid
a natural plant growth hormone ), B1 and other plant
vitamins, plant hormones
, ( made from natural sources )
including Boron (B), Copper (Cu), Iron (Fe), Manganese (Mn),
Molybdenum (Mo), Sulfur (S) and Zinc (Zn) plus a natural
detergent based "sticker" that makes the product stick to the
leaves until absorbed by the plant.
This mix will make 16 gallons of solution.
K28RTP625 Tomato Trellis Clips
A must for serious tomato growers, these white plastic clips form a 3/4 inch circle around stem and trellis
line or tomato cage wire. Stems have side openings for ventilation and have a quick release feature that
allows you to move them during the year as the plant grows. Use them year after year. Excellent for cucumber
and other type vine crops too!