Very fast growing vine to 10-15ft. Vines may be ground dwelling, but
grow best when give upward support. Water frequently, grow in full
sun. If growing for sponges, allow the fruits to turn from green to
yellow on the vine. Fruits will lose quite a bit of moisture and
become light. Harvest, pull of thin outer skin and remove seeds. The
fibrous core should then be bleached and dried before using.
Fruits can be eaten, but the vine is most commonly grown for the
fibrous interior of the fruits, which when dried, can be used as a
sponge.Propagation: By seed.
1-2ft long, cylindrical, smooth skinned gourd. The interior contains
white flesh as well as a fibrous structure that is dried and used as
It is a astringent, pain killing herb that controls bleeding and
promotes healing, while at the same time boosting circulation and
increasing the flow of milk.
It is used internally for rheumatism, backache, internal hemorrhage,
chest pains, as well as hemorrhoids.
Young fruit can be eaten raw like cucumber or cooked like squash,
while the young leaves, shoots, flower buds, as well as the flowers
can be eaten after being lightly steamed.
The seeds can be roasted as a snack, or pressed to produce an oil.
Externally, it is used for shingles and boils. The dried fruit
fibers are used as abrasive sponges in skin care, to remove dead
skin and to stimulate the circulation.