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We picked a really cool gord at a pumpkin patch. And now we want to make it into a bird house... so what do we do? How do we dry it out or what ever needs to be done first?<br><br>
HELP! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
H
 

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Sorry I don't come to this forum often, so I didn't see your post till now, but I do know what to do with gourds.<br><br>
You need to let it dry, which will take a while, from a couple months up to a year depending on the size & type of gourd & weather conditions. You'll want to keep it in a well-ventilated place, off the ground if possible, or turn it from time to time to allow it to dry evenly. It'll probably dry faster if you scrape off the skin while it's green. Or leave it on. If you leave it on it will get a little mouldy, but that won't affect its usefulness and can be cleaned off later if you want (a copper pot scrubbing pad and water works well).<br><br>
Once it's dry (it will turn a tan color and be light in weight) you can cut a whole in the gourd and shake out the seeds. Gourds are easy to grow; plant the seeds after your last frost and give them plenty of water and you will have several more fun gourds next year! Be careful of the dust from the dried up interior of the gourd, though. It can irritate the throat. Wear a dust mask and work outside if possible. You can fill the gourd with water and scrape out the inside stuff if you want.<br><br>
As far as a birdhouse goes, most birds are particular about both the size of the gourd and size of the hole, so you might want to check out a book from the library for help.<br><br>
Hope this helps. Have fun and let us know how it comes out!
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;"><i>Originally posted by Plaid</i><br><b>Gourds are easy to grow;</b></td>
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Plaid, I am having the hardest time growing gourds!!!! I live in Hawaii so frost isn't a factor. The get blossoms and little baby gourds (about 3" long). And then they turn brown and shrivel up<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> Do you have any idea what's up there?
 

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It sounds like the blossoms aren't getting pollinated. It's common to have that happen at first, because you need to have both "male" and "female" flowers open at the same time and bees to transfer the pollen. The flowers that have a miniature gourd behind them are the females, the ones without are the males. Do you have plenty of bees around? If not, it may help to plant flowers that attract bees. Also, the more gourd vines you have planted the more likely you are to get pollination. It is possible to hand-pollinate them, but I have not had any luck the couple times I've tried that. The book Seed to Seed by Suzanne Ashworth has excellent pictures showing how to do that. It's also a great resource if you are interested in saving seeds from any garden crop.<br><br>
malamamama, I hope this helps and some of your gourd flowers get pollinated!
 

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I thought that might be it, so I did try to hand-pollinate. No we don't have many bees around......hmmmm.....I'll try planting some flowers and LOTS of gourds next time! Thanks for your help!!!
 
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