Strange vine, can anyone ID thru description alone?

Lantana, FL(Zone 10a)

I'm clearing my fiance's yard of 5 years worth of neglect...I noticed this strange vine growing up some junipers and strangling some other plants. It has insignificant, teeny yellow flowers. But the *fruit*! They're bright orange, the size of large grapes, with 8 raised ridges. When laid on its side it resembles an all orange basketball that's been tapered at the ends. Most of the mature fruits had burst open and inside the large seeds are a screaming bright fuschia! Bright orange fruit, large fuschia seeds. Very pretty! The leaves themselves have 5 segments, almost resembling small passiflora leaves. I know it sounds confusing. I'm at the point where I *will* buy another camera just to take pictures.

Archer/Bronson, FL(Zone 8b)

Liila,

Your description is perfect, because I do know what you are talking about. When you touch the leaves/vines it leaves you with a not stinky, but unpleasant odor?

I had this ID 2 years ago, don't remember the name and It grows over all my wanted vines. Just pulled a mess down today. A former neighbor of mine says he has used the fruit for edible purposes, howver, I never wanted to try it.

I will try to find that thread for you.

Molly
:^)))

South Florida, FL(Zone 10b)

Liila, I think the plant that you are describing is Balsam-Pear or Bitter Gourd, Momordica charantia. The fruit and seeds are very toxic causing a dangerous purgative effect.


This message was edited Jun 1, 2010 12:07 AM

Archer/Bronson, FL(Zone 8b)

Val, Thank goodness you came!!!!!

I have been searching and searching for that darned thing.

I could have posted a picture if I had taken one before I ripped them off the fence this morning.

Molly
:^)))

And Liila, when you are pulling them off, make sure you track them to the start, wear some good gloves and pull them up by the roots.

This message was edited Jul 26, 2005 9:05 PM

South Florida, FL(Zone 10b)

Molly, I used to have that weedy vine at my other house. I was constantly pulling it out because if left unchecked it just keeps on going. My neighbors then were from Jamaica and they used to tell me that over there the plant is used for some kind of ailment as medicine. I wouldn't try it though, it contains a really potent toxin.

Archer/Bronson, FL(Zone 8b)

Yes Val, my neighbors at the old house were from the islands and they had a use for it as well.

I'm not clever enough for any of those exotic things so I would not try.

Molly

South Florida, FL(Zone 10b)

Yeah, with those things better be safe than sorry. I used to be very concerned then because my son was little and we had children in and out all the time. You know how kids are, they'll put just about anything in their mouths.



This message was edited Jun 1, 2010 12:07 AM

Lantana, FL(Zone 10a)

After pulling, my hands and arms were left with a musty odor. Not terribly gross, but not pleasant, either. This weed was literally smothering and choking out a beautiful, mature agave plant. I didn't even see the 6 agave babies growing around mama until I had yanked up a wheelbarrow full. At first I started to leave some of it for the pretty fruit, but you're right Molly, it needs to go because it's *everywhere*...Weeds can sure be pretty, though! I am interested in learning more about the medicinal uses, just out of curiosity.

I'm finding all kinds of interesting plants at Byron's house. While cleaning up the side patio attached to an efficiency apartment I found a 2' tall marijuana plant and a bunch of smaller ones growing in a pile of leaves and assorted garbage. He used to rent out part of the house, and the best we can figure is that the previous tenant used to clean his "stash" there and threw the seeds on the ground. I never realized how pretty they are, so delicate looking and lacy. It almost hurt to have to throw them away. ;-D

Archer/Bronson, FL(Zone 8b)

Two and a half hours ago I had a nice little response done up here and the power went off before I hit the send. 3500 customers out due to a main line outage. So we left and went to Lil Reds for breakfast. Anyway's I will try to start over.

Val, I found the plant you were referring to in the Plant files, but onnly a couple photos. The foliage and flower look the same, but the "fruit" on the one I had in mind was more oval rather than oblong and the ripe color before popping open to reveal the red seeds, was yellow. Maybe it's a different hybrid that doesn't show a photo?

Liila, those MJ plants you pulled out? Do they resemble these in the photo? These are lacy type leaves and I have been told they resemble that other plant (although I am not personally acquainted with that other plant in its juvenile stage). If you like the look, I am growing these from seeds (Coralbush) and they are quite legal. I would be happy to give you some seeds or seedlings when we get together. And hopefully that will be soon. We all at the Galloping Gardener's Club want to meet you.
Molly
:^)))

Thumbnail by MollyMc
Fort Pierce, FL(Zone 10a)

My mother grew a "pretty" batch of plants that came up where she emptied her bird seed container. We lived near a herb warehouse where mountain herbs were collected and mailed all over the world, and were inspected by government agents. One morning they appeared at our door wanting to know who was planting illegal plants in the flower bed. They had spotted them as they drove by. My mother was mortified! But the agents did "de-weed" her flower bed! This was back in the 50's, now the bird seed is sterilized before it's packaged. We didn't even know what "pot" was! LOL
Pati

South Florida, FL(Zone 10b)

Molly, Bitter Gourd seeds are a bright red and the capsule an orangey-yellow or pumpkin color. The difference in color could be the stage of maturity, soil PH, sun etc. I'm not aware of any other Momordica around here, but there could be others.



This message was edited Jun 1, 2010 12:07 AM

Archer/Bronson, FL(Zone 8b)

Thanks Val,

Whenever I get some more of them in fruit, think I'll take a photo and post it over there.

Molly
:^)))

mid central, FL(Zone 9a)

heres a couple of pictures

Thumbnail by trackinsand
mid central, FL(Zone 9a)

one more

Thumbnail by trackinsand
Archer/Bronson, FL(Zone 8b)

Track,

Thanks for posting the photos. Them's the ones.

Molly
:^)))

Liila, If you google the "Balsam Pear" you will find a lot of articles about this fruit. Notice though that there isn't much said by westerners or use in the western world. But if you are interested in unusual type herbs, check out Goto Kola. http://www.herbsrainbear.com/encylopedia/gotakola.htm

I happen to have some of this, plenty to share if you would like some.

Pinellas Park, FL(Zone 9b)

I'm constantly battling the balsam pear. It is intermingle with the air potato and a few other spots.

Archer/Bronson, FL(Zone 8b)

Yep!!!!!

mid central, FL(Zone 9a)

youre welcome! debi

Miami, FL(Zone 10b)

I too have been battling that evil vine for a very long time. I have tried many different ways to eliminate it with no luck, it always comes back to cover up my other vines. The smell is indeed strong and unpleasant, I have a hard time dealing with it!

Port Saint Lucie, FL(Zone 9b)

That's definitely balsom pear. Just keep pulling it up - try to get the roots or it will take over!

Post a Reply to this Thread

You must log in and subscribe to Dave's Garden to post in this thread.
BACK TO TOP