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Drying Gourds

Unlike other garden vegetables, you won't eat a gourd (Yet, they are edible). If you are going to put small gourds on display, you can do so right away. A healthy gourd will last for many months.

Many gourds are dried and later used in a variety of projects, especially for crafts. The drying process takes a long time. Here's how to dry them for later use:

Drying and Curing Gourds:

Gourds take a long time to dry. Small ones take at least a month. The long gourd, used for crafts and birdhouse gourds, can take six months or more. Here are the basics for drying them:

Clean gourds with a solution of water and a disinfectant or bleach to kill any bacteria. Place gourds on a screen or a board, making sure that they do not touch each other. Store them in a cool, well ventilated area. Gently move them each day or two, and wipe off any moisture that is on them. Moisture is natural, as they are perspiring off the water content, which is about 90% of their weight. Fungus on them is not abnormal. They are okay unless they develop a soft spot. If a soft spot is found, discard it.

Gourds are dry, when the seeds rattle inside. After losing all of the water content, the gourd becomes very lightweight- - and fragile.

Once they are dry, you can make a wide range of crafts. They can be painted, shellaced, or left unfinished. As previously mentioned, Long gourds are used most frequently for crafts. Birdhouse gourds are also very common. You can make just about anything, including vases, flower pots, bowls, dishes, ladles. Simply use your imagination, or visit a craft show where a gourd crafter is showing his or her crafts.

Did you know? Gourds were commonly used in ancient cultures around the world for a variety of tools and dishes.

For More Information:

There is a wealth of information about this fun plant.

Pumpkin Nook- How to Grow Gourds and pumpkins a members of the same family and are grown similarly. This site has lots of growing info.

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