Author Topic: Breeding short season cold climate luffa  (Read 1832 times)

Ocimum

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Re: Breeding short season cold climate luffa
« Reply #15 on: 2019-07-23, 10:42:23 AM »
How are your luffa growing?

My tropical ones are quite slow growing even in the greenhouse, and I am not sure to even be able to harvest one.

Chiu-Ki Chan

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Re: Breeding short season cold climate luffa
« Reply #16 on: 2019-07-23, 10:36:10 PM »
Mine are in a raised bed, and very slow growing as well, even though it's been really hot and they should be happy.

Peter

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Re: Breeding short season cold climate luffa
« Reply #17 on: 2019-07-23, 11:54:17 PM »
I looked up Lagenaria siceraria. It's a gourd that I've only seen dried as a water bottle in kung fu movies. I am familiar with bitter melon but in Cantonese cuisine we usually cook it with fermented black bean or other strong flavor to make it taste good, and I prefer lighter dishes.

Just for the record, Kikinda Competition Strain gourds are Lagenaria siceraria, and they have excellent taste (granted, I cook them). They can be cooked for a long time at extra hot temperatures, too (should a recipe call for it). They're good to eat even when fairly large, as long as they haven't hardened sufficiently, yet. They're really fun to grow, and aren't bothered by squash bugs like zucchini.

It produces a lot of fruit, and I've had success transplanting it two years in a row (but it wasn't early or heat-tolerant for me). Another variety of the species with long fruit was stunted in the same dry, steppe-climate conditions.

My plants were started in foam cups in my unheated greenhouse (similar to winter sowing), and transplanted outside in either May or early June.
« Last Edit: 2019-07-24, 12:08:35 AM by naiku »

Ocimum

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Re: Breeding short season cold climate luffa
« Reply #18 on: 2019-07-24, 03:43:44 PM »
Mine are in a raised bed, and very slow growing as well, even though it's been really hot and they should be happy.
Ok, thanks for the reply. Let's hope they speed up when days are getting shorter... When I grew another strain a few years back, it seemed to me that they grew way faster, but am not sure.

Andrew Barney

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Re: Breeding short season cold climate luffa
« Reply #19 on: 2019-07-24, 09:34:43 PM »
Though I don't grow luffa, I am in the same climate as you,  so I know what struggles you may be experiencing.  If luffa is anything like Watermelon I think you may have the best luck with shorter and less-long fruited types if at all possible. That way you will have the best chance of getting decently ripe fruit.  August and September hopefully they will put on some good growth before winter hits in mid to late October or November.

Though we have gotten lots of extra rain this year my watermelon project has nearly failed this year.  Poor germination and growth. Squash even worse. So it seems like a poor year for melon type crops here to me. :/
« Last Edit: 2019-07-24, 09:38:55 PM by Andrew Barney »

Peter

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Re: Breeding short season cold climate luffa
« Reply #20 on: 2019-07-25, 01:02:07 AM »
@Andrew

That's really sad news. I hope things start looking up for the plants that did sprout.

Have you ever used black plastic with watermelon? The warmer soil helps the plants to get a more vigorous start earlier in the season (and it keeps the weeds out). It might help warm the soil for germination, too (if you direct-seed). I don't usually direct-seed watermelon, though, since I've had better results with starting them early. Also, if last year is an indicator, black plastic helps them ripen more consistently.

Black plastic might get in the way of acclimatization goals, though (unless you always use it), since it changes the growing environment significantly.
« Last Edit: 2019-07-25, 01:05:52 AM by naiku »