Why my gourds aren't getting moldy

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Last summer I grew long-handle dipper gourds. They have been in a warm,dry basement all winter. One is finally moldy, but the other 6 are still green. Normally by now they are ready to clean when I have grown birdhouse gourds. Is it because of there size that they may take longer? Maybe the moldy one was more mature when picked. Could I prick small holes in the bottom to help them dry faster? Thanks, Anita

-- Anita Nielsen (atnielsen@egl.net), March 19, 2000


Anita: I have experienced some of my gourds getting moldy as they dried, and some just dried. Can you tell by the weight of the gourds if they are drying? How do you clean them before use? I was told to use a clorine bleach 1/2 & 1/2 with water but that left the gourds smelling like bleach. I paint mine and make Santas out of them. I'm not sure you would want to prick holes in them, has anyone else done so? Jan

-- Jan B (Janice12@aol.com), March 19, 2000.

I usually judge readiness by shaking. If I can hear seeds rattle, or the thud of a mass rolling around in there, I consider it ready for cutting. Some of mine get moldy, others not while waiting for this stage. I followed advice from a big grower and left my gourds out in the garden all winter. Some are just now ready for cutting. From what I have experienced and heard, you just can't rush the curing and drying of gourds.

-- Kathy (redfernfarm@lisco.com), March 19, 2000.

To Jan B. I've never used bleach to clean gourds. It is not necessary. I soak them and then scrape them with a sharp knife. I've since learned not to prick them to help them to dry faster as it can cause them to rot. Anita

-- Anita Nielsen (atnielsen@egl.net), March 22, 2000.

I use the antibacterial dish soap to wash my gourds before letting them dry, none of them rotted either. No bleach smell.

-- Mary (mlogan298@yahoo.com), March 22, 2000.

I always just leave my gourds in a pile next to the house outside and they rot just fine. No fuss, no inside mess. Good luck!!

-- Yolanda (ybereiden@peoplepc.com), March 23, 2000.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ