I did not do any gourds this year. I still have a stash of previous years birdhouse gourds to play with.
I did do the luffa thing...and I have one entrant to the Great Pumpkin Contest...It is a volunteer seed that must have been in the chicken coop scrapings that I tossed in the garden this spring... its a beauty.. but it is drying down now.
If you look at the pic it is almost 32 plus some odd feet long from its widest point on the vines! It took over my garden, climbed my sweet autum joys and came through the fence towards our parking area...
Care to guess how many pumkins this baby will have? They are basket ball size or their abouts!
Take about increasing the mynahs!!!
OK, should we leave the GREAT PUMKIN CONTEST of '09 here on this link or start a complete newbie?
I will use them for decoration for the next weeks and then harvest the seed for more next year. We have a couple gourd birdhouses at the cabin. The gourds were given to me during a DG round up that we hosted up there in the mountains. We drilled holes, cleaned and painted and although that was 4 or so years ago, they are still being used by the local feathered friends. The paint has worn a bit but they are still up in the pear and apple tree and provide a home for them every season.
The ones from last year that I didn't harvest seed from just eventually turned color to greyish and were paper thin so I pitched them as the seeds had gotten moldy inside. The ones from which I took seed got pitched. I wonder if I keep one this year and just let it dry rot if it would start new plants in the spring just by planting the gourd itself?
Well, what I do is just put the gourds someplace and let them totally dry. Usually we let them air dry. Dont have too much trouble with mice with the gourds like the sunflower heads, but when they get dry, they we cardboard box them for storage until ready to use.
Yes, they get moldy on the outside and the seeds inside get dried and sometimes mold, but I let them dry until the following season. Let them get hard then crack or drill them open to gather the seeds. I have not had trouble raising "moldy" seed!
The shell of the gourds can be washed like that birhouse gourd above.. The birdhouse gourds are neat as they can take on a haiku look to them and if varnished almost look as if they are a hauiku ceramic! They are great to paint, especially if you have a talent to be artistic. I am a paint by number kind of artist myseeeelf.. you know the tyupe, solid colors work well! LOL! As for those with cute and beautiful scenery on them.. I gotta hire a Van Gogh.
Yes, all gourds loose their bright color when dry.
Im a betting though if you just chucked a few in a particular place on your compost pile, next spring you will have volunteers that you could transplant. I love having a seperate manure/compost/dirt pile that you can do just that type of thing! Chuck the seeds of stuff and see what comes later! Then also have a pile that is strickly fertilizer.
Im in a pretty depressed area. I used to do the farmers market thing and got tired of paying the lot fee and half the load home. Seems we spent more time and money than it was worth back then. I dont mind gardening and planting extra. Usually something good comes of it in another way. Someone helps doing something and so it goes.
Darn I wish now I hadn't pitched those moldy ones. Thanks for your instructions, now I know better. We aren't going to the cabin this weekend, had a change of plans so it will be another week till we get up there and I get a pic of the gourd houses. By then it should be implanted in my brain enough that I don't forget the photo lol!
We had a huge birhouse gourd crop a few years back and I still have some in storage. Slowly they are going to new homes, but jeez, what the heck do you do with 200 some odd biguns that we were not the only ones taking them to a farmers market...I have resorted to ebay!
Heres the 70's one...peace out man!
Eweee! nasty pic... must be the fog man, its the fog.. yeah.. the fog man... LOL! (stupid camera!!! LOL! I gotta quit playing with the effects!)
Cant ya just hear that tune, um what was it now.. oh yeah, Nights in white satin... BREATHE DEEP!
Your so right, only crazy birds would want in there... look, theres one now.. staright out of Alferd Hitchcocks .. the Birds! LOL!
I would if I could remember to go up there and pick them outta the pines - I think about it in the morning and then when I get home I forget until it is about time to go to bed! LOL, blonde thing I guess^_^
I have harvested the seed from one that was beginning to rot. Several more have tiny brown spots, but still using them in the arrangements. Did you see the new thread I began on Table Centerpieces? I used a couple of them in that one.
I am not going to paint them, least don't think so, but now that you mention it I do have a lot of paint and won't have much going on after the holiday??? hum, thanks BB for making me contemplate yet another project!
Um you will confirm your conviction to paint them when they finally do get dry.. they will probably more than likely go moldy. Not to worry, that will wash off, but then the color of the gordies will be faded like old glory. Dusty looking faded, but the nature design will still be apparent. It takes several months for them to dry so dont get in a hurry.
The guy at the market says he dont let his touch each other when they are drying.. never did really say why, but perhaps it just helps the air circulate on them better.
I think I left a small bushel of my gourds and forgot about them and they dried ok.
If you have not seen them there is a gourd called Apple Gourd. Fixed up with a red stain and finished with a clean out jar lid will do very well for at least one season of selling. You need a mix but that Apple Gourd will easily sell for fifteen bucks but you absolutely need a near professional finish. I charged and got thirty bucks for the Martin
Sized gourds. Planted early the Apple Gourds will produce an average of a dozen nice gourds with thick skins. To be effective I like to display at least four dozen mixed bird houses with another two dozen or more in the van.
For setting those jar shoulders into the gourd I used automotive fender bender polyester. I have had gourds last twenty years in my care...but that includes revarnishing about every six years.
I am just unclear as to how the "cleanout jar" works? I understand that is how you clean out the nest from year to year, but how does it work? How does that make the inside of the gourd accessible? and how do you keep it from just falling out?
You cut the shoulder off the jar, cut a hole in the gourd and set it in either epoxy or fender bender polyester which is available at any big box store auto department by various product names in various parts of the country It sets and can be sanded down, drilled or painted in five minutes. The timed epoxies are allmost that fast but are harder to sand and work with.
This gourd was published in Bird and Bloom magazine some years ago with a neat flower design painted on it. I have sold many nicely designed painted Purple Martin size for $49.95 easily. Natural gourds are a whole lot better attractor nesting site than plastic gourds. I never painted them white although some who bought them did.
Needless to say if you want top dollar you must have professional quality product. I keep the mistakes hanging in my back yard and for an occasional give away...buy two at $49.95 and get this one absolutely free.
A gourd finished out with good outside varnish will easily last forty years if it is maintained every five or six years. A twenty to forty year old aged gourd birdhouse will again attract a fine price even in an estate auction. I like them better when they are old and worn somewhat.