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Grafting squash onto buffalo gourd

Posted by fabaceae_native z6 NM (My Page) on
Mon, May 7, 12 at 13:46

Is there anyone out there crazy enough to have tried what I'm thinking of doing?

I've researched this and found evidence that it works, and would like to try grafting some winter squash vines onto existing wild buffalo gourd, Cucurbita foetidissima plants. If you're not familiar with this wild gourd, it grows throughout the South and West of the US as a long-lived perennial trailing vine that produces immense crops of 3-inch gourds every summer. It never falls prey to squash bugs or borers, and always seems to be healthy and vigorous on scant resources. Someone interested in no-till cropping could potentially grow squash a bunch of squash this way off of a single large buffalo gourd plant.

Any input as to the grafting method, etc., would be very appreciated.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Grafting squash onto buffalo gourd

i never heard of veggie grafting ... ken

RE: Grafting squash onto buffalo gourd

Yeah Ken, veggie grafting is not too unusual. The reasons for it are often unusual though I guess... From what I understand grafting of things like tomatoes is typically done in areas plagued by certain soil-borne diseases/pests.

Grafting of cucurbits is practiced mainly to increase plant growth and yield.

Also, I'm sure you've seen those gimicky seed catalogs selling tomato plants grafted onto a potato, so you get both crops from a single plant?

I'm interested in this buffalo gourd idea because of the plant's tough perennial character. I'm definitely not the first to be interested in this plant, as horticulturists have been trying to put it to use for a century now, for the oil in its seed, the starch in its enormous taproot, as well as for its genes. The latter has not worked out, since it will not hybridize with other members of its genus (some ploidy problem I gather).

RE: Grafting squash onto buffalo gourd

This sounds very promising. I will have to be on the lookout for some buffalo gourds this next year and try grafting some cucumber or squash seeds onto a buffalo gourd. Hopefully it will not make the cucumber or sqaush poisonous!

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