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Beginner Gardening: Advice on gourds

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Forum: Beginner GardeningReplies: 3, Views: 36
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Central Florida, FL

May 25, 2012
12:08 PM

Post #9138257

I recently bought a pack of gourd seeds that said they were for crafts and drying -Large Bottle Calabaza gourd. The package did not say how large is large.

Last year we had to prune a crepe myrtle that was close to a power line and one of the branches was so neat that I saved it. So when I started to plant the gourds instead of using a conventional trellis I buried the 8' tall branch and planted four seedlings around it - great way to recycle. My vision was the vines would trail up the limbs and eventually I would have gourds hanging from the branches - like a gourd tree. My vision has come to fruition but I have a couple of questions

The plants had dozens of delicate white blooms, but only a small amount set fruit - is this natural? Is there a nutrient I could have added to help set more fruit?

Second - should I try to make some type of sling to help support the gourds? I don't know how large they will get or how much weight the stems can support. Any suggestions-ideas will be appreciated.

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Durhamville, NY
(Zone 5b)

May 25, 2012
3:29 PM

Post #9138551

I believe that gourds have male and female blossoms like squash and the males out number the females by several times.

I can't tell you about a sling, I've always grow that sort of thing on the ground.
Orlando, FL
(Zone 9b)

May 27, 2012
12:31 PM

Post #9140659

Doug is right, there are female and male flowers. you will be able to tell which flowers are which before they even open. females have a swollen ovary behind the petals, and males are normal.
and yes male flowers usually outnumber the females by a lot. sometimes they aren't open at the same time at all. but you are lucky.
ok, i know they get heavy and quite large but i don't know about using a sling, so you might want to pick them when you see them bending stems or obviously too heavy to be hanging -you know?
Central Florida, FL

June 6, 2012
2:08 PM

Post #9154844

Thanks for the help.

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