Tree Gourds

how2mark(z9 FL)October 15, 2005

Hi,

Because we don't have the ground space, or a support to grow bird house gourds on, I tried something a little different. I grew them at the base of our peach tree. What a sight. It grew up through the tree then cascaded down. And I have 4 gourds, one really big one. I wish I had a digital camera so you could see this, it's amazing.

My question is this. Do you think I can leave them hanging from the tree over the winter to dry? I think that I've read here that you can dry them outside, but will the vine support them after it dies. I grew gourds once before, but we moved to another state. In my old house I dried them in the attic. No attic or basement here.

Thanks,

Donna zone 7 Delaware

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janmar(7a WA)

Hi Donna. I had apple gourds growing up a tree and I found that, after the first hard frost, the vines became desiccated and brittle and seemed unlikely to support those heavy apples. I did not want them to fall several feet so I ended up cutting the gourds off and leaving them around the base of the tree. Eventually due to their increasingly diminishing weight and some high winds we were having, I moved the gourds to a sheltered outside area. The great thing about growing on a tree is that the gourds form-up so nicely and have unmarred shapes. Good luck. J

    Bookmark   October 15, 2005 at 4:16PM
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how2mark(z9 FL)

Thanks Janmar. I'll just leave them where they are until a hard frost. Your right, they have perfect shape.

Yours dried ok outside? Any trouble with rodents getting at them?

Donna

    Bookmark   October 17, 2005 at 11:58AM
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janmar(7a WA)

Hi Donna, Mine dried outside beautifully, but even though we can get very cold, we are VERY dry. We have few problems with rodents here in Eastern WA. Any so foolish as to venture out in a big open space are easy pickings for hawks and coyotes. In any event, I found that the hard shell and long drying process seems to discourage most creatures who find they would do better to head for an easier lunch. J

    Bookmark   October 18, 2005 at 8:00PM
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