Saturday, May 7, 2011

Growing Angled Luffa in Container

Don't believe everything that is written on the seed packets. If I have believe it, I won't try growing angled luffa last warm season. When I was browsing online seed catalogues, the sentence "need a very long warm season to grow at least 16weeks" always put me off buying the seeds that I wanted. Moreover the quantity of 12 seeds for about $3.20perpacket will make me consider it not twice but several times especially when you don't know whether it is suitable to grow or not here in Adelaide. I have already have one growing slowly in the veggie patch which was growing but not yet flowering for about 7weeks at that moment. But Bangchik post about angled luffa in his garden produce within 2 months in December 2010 gave me an idea. I actually don't have to start sowing angled luffa earlier to make sure that they have long growing season. But if we would have at least 23 ~30 degree celcius for several weeks, the plants will grow very fast without any setbacks. End of December (early summer), I have a few of angled luffa seeds left and an empty polystyrene container. So with the help of my youngest sister Tatiyana, we did direct sowing of angled luffa seeds in polystyrene container. I am giving credit to Tatiyana because she was in charge of watering the plants at our backyard when she was staying with me.
After 10weeks from sowing, it gave us our first angled luffa fruit harvest!
It is difficult to imagine a big fruit like angled luffa can be grown in container, but it is possible. One plant angled luffa if growing in tropic and on the ground can usually climb all over up to 5 metre. You just need a deep pot for them like cucumber growing in pots.I think angled luffa can be grown in small garden or even in balcony because the plant won't grow like the one on the ground (well I let the photo convince you) . Two plants will give you many harvest. The foliage is pretty too. The container that we were using were not deep enough (~20cm) but surprisingly it did grow and produce a decent number of fruits up until now. But deeper container is much more better.

Angled luffa female flower.
Cucumber green gem and angled luffa sharing trelis together.
If you want to keep angled luffa seeds just make sure, you are not growing sponge luffa at the same time as it will cross-pollinate.
The right size to harvest. I usually harvest angled luffa when they have reached about 30cm long.
I have never used luffa for sponge.
But I am curious hope one day we have so many luffa that I can let some dry for sponge.
But not this year;-).


Kelli said...

Really interesting plant & post! Looks like you've had success again! Kelli

cikmanggis said...

Cm memang tiada rezeki tanam sayur dalam bekas,beberapa kali gagal....insyallah bila pindah rumah baru nanti nak buat tempat khas untuk berkebun kerana kawasan yang sangat terhad,

Selalunya bila kami tanam petola hasilnya sungguh lumayam.Insyallah akan tanam petola dan sawi..baru semai 3 hari lepas.Insyallah akan masuk blog jika berjaya:)

Sue Garrett said...

What do luffas taste like? - I hadn't realised there were some you could eat!

Patricia said...

I am continually impressed by how healthy and happy your plants look!

One said...

That is great and only 10 weeks! Now where do I find that trellis? You made them yourself?

~TastyTravels~ said...

I'm never had luffa or seen it grown. Very cool!!

cathy@home said...

Realy interesting post I love to grow them instead of buying them

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Kelli~ I was so excited that we can actually grow angled luffa here.

CikManggis~Harap petola dan sawi Cm cepat membesar.

Sue~The young ones are sweet and tender when cook. I prefer angled luffa than zucchini.

Patricia~My plants do look stress sometime and wilting under the hot afternoon sun:).

Kwee Peng~Oh that trellis I pick it up from somebody junk. Usually end of the year in my neighbourhood, council will organize the pick up day for hard waste so I took a look any material I can use for the garden. I think it is broken into half but it is still usable. I am not talented as Milka to make a trellis like that;-).

Holly~They grow very fast like cucumber.

Cathy~I have not eaten angled luffa for 2 years until we have success growing them. It was really a big day when we harvest our first angled luffa.

tina said...

I posted a whole comment and the computer ate it. I have never seen angled luffa before but think it is neat how it grows and it looks good in that pot. As do the cucumbers. I'd be interested to hear how the sponge feels!

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Tina~ I am waiting one of the angled luffa fruit to dry at the moment to collect the seeds but with the weather getting cooler now it takes forever to wait. Maybe I can have some sponge when it dried.

J.C. said...

Looking at your angled loofah (or what I usually call 'petola'), I am very tempted to grow it in my garden. And I also love cucumbers!!!

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

J.C. ~ You can grow them all year round, lucky you. When you first taste your first home-grown petola, you will wonder why you don't try to plant it earlier;-).