Lagenaria siceraria seed
– Sow in a rich, well-drained location in full sun after all danger of frost. Do not plant squash family crops in the same spot 2 years in a row.
– Prepare the bed by turning the soil under to a depth of 8 inches. Level with a rake to remove clumps of grass and stones.
– Sow 6-8 seeds 3 inches apart in hills 8 feet apart.
– Cover seeds with a ½ inch of fine soil.
– Firm lightly and keep evenly moist.
– Seeds emerge in 7-14 days.
– Thin seedlings to 3-4 per hill when they are 1-2 inches high.
– Keep weeds under control during the growing season. Weeds compete with plants for water, space and nutrients, so control them by either cultivating often or use a mulch to prevent their seeds from germinating. Avoid disturbing the soil around the plants when weeding.
– Keep plants well watered during dry periods to promote rapid, uninterrupted growth. Plants need about 1 inch of rain per week during the growing season. Use a rain gauge to check to see if you need to add water. It’s best to water with a drip or trickle system that delivers water at low pressure at the soil level. If you water with overhead sprinklers, water early in the day so the foliage has time to dry off before evening, to minimize disease problems. Keep the soil moist but not saturated.
– Gourds grow well on trellises or supports, keeping the fruits off the ground.
– Monitor for pests and diseases. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for pest controls recommended for your area.