Bottle gourd Seeds, Nam Tao Yao ((Lagenaria siceraria) Asian vegetable
The bottle gourd, Lagenaria siceraria (synonym Lagenaria vulgaris Ser.), also known as opo squash, or long melon,
Bottle gourd Seeds, Nam Tao Yao (Asian vegetable) Fruit has light green skin
bottle gourd is a vine grown for its fruit, which can either be harvested young and used as a vegetable, or harvested mature, dried, and used as a bottle, utensil, or pipe. The fresh fruit has a light green smooth skin and a white flesh. Rounder varieties are called calabash gourds. They come in a variety of shapes: they can be huge and rounded, small and bottle shaped, or slim and serpentine, more than a metre long. Gourds are often called “calabashes”, but this is incorrect; calabashes (Crescentia cujete) are the fruit of the tree, while gourds (Lagenaria) grow on vines. See Sally Price, “When is a calabash not a calabash” (New West Indian Guide 56:69-82, 1982).
Gourd » Bottle Gourd
Also known as White-flowered gourd and Upo or Opo, this edible variety is vigorous, disease-tolerant, and high yielding. Fruit has light green skin, sweet, grows to a foot long and weighs approximately 2.5 pounds. Pick when fruit is immature.
Asian vegetable names...
- China: po gua, poo gua, kwa kwa, dudhi, hu gua, hu lu gua, opo
- India: lauki
- Indonesia: labu
- Japan: hyotan, yugao
- Malaysia: labu ayer
- Philippines: opo, upo
- Sri Lanka: diya labu
- Thailand: buap khaus, nam tao
- Vietnam: bau
The gourd was one of the first cultivated plants in the world, grown not primarily for food, but for use as a water container. The bottle gourd may have been carried from Africa to Asia, Europe and the Americas in the course of human migration, or by seeds floating across the oceans inside the gourd. It has been proved to be in the New World prior to the arrival of Columbus
Cultivation: Requires a long, warm growing season. Prepare fertile, well drained soil. Sow seeds in spring/early summer after last frost in a warm, sunny location. Hill planting: Form soil into a 1-ft. diameter mound 3-4' tall. Space mounds 4-6' apart. On each mound plant 1-2 seeds. Row planting: See spacing info in chart. Keep soil moist. Fertilize as needed. Train to climb a vertical support for better air circulation, straighter fruit and ease of harvest. Bottle gourd flowers during early evening to sunrise. May need hand pollination. Harvest fruit when young and tender.