Chayote, Chayote Squash, Vegetable Pear, Choko, Chaco, Choco, Madeira Marrow 'Pale-green-fruited'

Sechium edule

Family: Cucurbitaceae (koo-ker-bih-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Sechium (SEK-ee-um) (Info)
Species: edule (ED-yew-lee) (Info)
Cultivar: Pale-green-fruited
Synonym:Sicyos edule
Synonym:Chayota edulis


Edible Fruits and Nuts



Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Vines and Climbers

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Late Fall/Early Winter



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Wear gloves to protect hands when handling seeds

Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

San Diego, California

Gainesville, Florida

Savannah, Georgia

Honomu, Hawaii

Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 14, 2015, a_night_owl from San Diego, CA wrote:

I'm in coastal southern California, and we seldom get a killing frost (once every 5 years or so).

My pale-green fruited chayote vines are rampant growers. Last fall I had one go 50 feet before I cut it back. Once planted the vines grow every which way and will overtake anything nearby (fences, tomato plants, trees, slow moving animals...). I have a very young apple tree a few feet from where the chayote were planted, and I had to break the tendrils of new vines at least once a week - I missed a week and the poor tree was bent over at 90 degrees from the weight of the vines and developing fruit (thankfully, being young it sprung back when released). Chayote vines are the very definition of rampant growing vines.

The first time I grew them I was concerned that ... read more


On Jan 6, 2013, Bellsp from Warrington, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

I just ate my first chayote! I fried it just like a large sliced French fry and it was delicious! If you like yellow squash and kiwis you should love this! It had an indescribable nectar sweetness and was almost juicy! I either had one with two seeds or I split the one. I planted it any way. I will be buying many more. I hope to grow my own here in north Florida. I can't say enough about this fun 'new to me' vegetable! My dad loved it, too! I'm now interested in finding the spiny variety. I joined for two months, but I have enjoyed this site so much, I plan on renewing definitely. As soon as I made it home I looked it up on here and had all the information I needed!


On Sep 20, 2012, wannadanc from Olympia, WA wrote:

I bought one at the grocery store, intending to eat it. It had other plans, sending up a shoot very quickly. I now have it suspended over water in a glass - and the shoot is several feet tall complete w/ tendrils. Obviously, there is no hope for growing success in my zone (7-8), but I enjoy watching the effort it is making.


On Nov 22, 2011, victorengel from Austin, TX wrote:

I think there are more than 6 kinds. I've seen only two kinds here in Austin, Texas, both rather large. One with spines, one without. The one with spines is dark. The one without is light.

In Guatemala they are called guisquil. In addition to these two varieties, we also had a dark skinned spineless variety, a white, spineless variety, and my favorite -- one with very small, spineless fruit.

Inside the fruit is a single seed, encapsulated by a textured sack. In the dark skinned varieties, this sack can be very tough and is not eaten. In the light skinned and small varieties, it is tender and can be eaten. The skin also varies from tough in the case of dark skinned ones to thin and tender in the lighter ones.

In addition to the fruit, all other ... read more


On Feb 27, 2011, rjogden from Gainesville, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

My first experience growing Chayote was with supermarket fruit planted in Gainesville Florida some 20 years ago. With minimal training, the vines completely covered a horizontal wooden trellis set some 8 feet in the air. Fruits hung down and could be picked off as needed. I thought I had all the fruit but, after the first killing frost, found there were literally dozens that had been hidden by the foliage. I lost track of the plant after moving to another location; I do not thing the next owners of the house knew what they had or cared for it.
Last summer (2010) I again planted a merliton purchased from a local Publix grocery store, in a large (about 7-10 gallon) nursery container in a good-quality pine-bark-based media, along with a healthy dose of bone meal and fish meal. The grow... read more


On Oct 12, 2004, foodiesleuth from Honomu, HI (Zone 11) wrote:

Another name by which this plant is known: in Louisiana they call it Mirliton.

I'm familiar with two varieties that grow here in the East Coast of the Big Island of Hawaii.....a light green, almost white with some little fuzzy spines and another a darker green with smoother skin.

I have collected many recipes using chayote.


On Oct 9, 2004, Xenomorf from Valley of the Sun, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

According to the Multilingual Multiscript Plant Name Database, there are 6 types (cultivars).
Dark-green-fruited, Pale-green-fruited, Round-fruited, Spiny-fruited, Thin-fruited & White-fruited.