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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Exotic Gourds

The past couple of years, I have had a pretty bad time growing exotic asian gourds. The only exotic gourd I manged to grow was the Luffa Gourd in 2010 (Read those posts here)

I don't give up easy, so in 2011 I pledged to grow these exotic asian gourds yet again. But this time around I succeeded, but it has been bitter sweet.

The gourds I tried were- Bitter gourd (Indian and Chinese), Snake Gourd, Ridge Gourd and Bottle Gourd.

I have had great luck with the Bitter Gourds this year, too much good luck actually. I grew two varieties, the one on the left are what i call "Chinese Bitter Melon" as those are the ones I find in the local Ranch99. The ones on the right are the Indian variety (the ones I ate growing up in India and they are available at the local Indian grocery stores.

As much as one might be obsessed over Bitter Gourds, it is difficult to consume a lot of these. So I shared the bounty with the extended "Namakkal clan" and my Asian colleagues

Snake Gourds are a precious commodity here in the US, and I hear even in India these days. One typically finds the fat variety in the store. We gladly consumed all those lovely Snake Gourds (and shared some with friends too).

The Ridge Gourds though fairly common sight at the local indian grocer, the store bought ones look pretty worn out and tired (like me). My homegrown Ridge Gourds were very tender and kept well for over 3 weeks in the refrigerator even after harvesting. I made a couple of classic dishes and a few new ones. Need I say more- the Ridge Gourds were a grand success.

The Bottle Gourds are some of the most easiest to grow and the plants typically take over the planting area and the surrounding places too. They are typically shaped like bottles, i.e. cylindrical. My Gourds this year turned up in this shape instead and made for some cutesy gifts.


  1. Wow. What a harvest. The snake gourds are making me green with envy :-) Where did you get the seeds for these ?


  2. The snake gourd seeds are from

    The success rate of the snake gourd seeds i got from them was close to zero. This year has fared much better