|Birdhouse gourd vine in September.|
In April, my husband planted seeds for birdhouse gourds (lagenaria sicerana). We thought it would be an amusing experiment, but as you can see, we've created a monster that is gobbling up our backyard. (Notice the singular article 'a' in my sentence. This is one vine. We thinned the seedlings after they came up.)
We might have been willing to accommodate this plant except for a few things.
- It's been 150 days and we haven't seen a single gourd. According to the seed package, the planting time is March - July (check) and the days until harvest are 120-130 (check plus). The vine has beautiful white flowers that open at dusk but no fruits. This makes me suspect a pollination problem, but this seems odd since the plant is under a light that attracts dozens of moths throughout the night.
- The foliage, although lovely and lush, stinks like cat pee that is fermenting in the sun. Gross. Even this might have been workable except that the vines are along the only pathway in and out of the backyard, and walking (or more precisely, trampling) by kicks up the aroma.
- The final factor that led us to pull up the vine last Saturday was the onset of fall. We simply needed the space for more desirable veggies. (More about them in an upcoming blog post.)