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1. How to germinate seeds
1. Should we soak the seeds overnight for better germination?
Soaked seeds can give the better result. Soaked seeds will germinate quickly.
2. Should we use the seedling tray or direct sow is recommended?
We can maintain the seeds in the tray at the beginning. But when the plant reaches 2 to 3 inches in length it requires some more space to grow. Sowing directly into pot is the best way to cultivate.
3. What is the best season?
Summer season is the best season to grow Sponge gourd(OP). The germination process will be good in this season.
4. Will it germinate in all seasons?
You can grow Sponge gourd in all the season. But it will grow well in Summer.
5. How many days will it take to germinate?
Sponge gourd seeds will take 7 to 10 days to germinate from seeding. During the germination period, soil should be moist, so keep watering it frequently.
6. Can we keep it indoor after sowing or we should keep it outdoor?
Sponge gourd requires good sunlight, so better to grow in outdoor. If you like to grow indoor place it where it can get good sunlight.
7. What temperature is required?
Sponge gourd needs minimum 20 degree C. In this temperature, we can expect the better result.
2. What potting mix to use?
1. Will the coco peat based potting mix be sufficient or does it need soil only?
Plants need fertilizer and compost mandatorily. For that no need to invest separately. If you are buying our potting mix it is enough. Our potting mix has fertilizer and compost content in it. So it increases the germinating capacity.
3. How to water ?
1. Does it need a lot of water or very less water?
Daily watering in summer, two days once in the winter season and 3 days once in rainy season.( if rainwater does not flow to the plant).
2. Will it sustain high sunlight?
As Sponge gourd is a summer season crop, it can withstand high sunlight.
3. Does it grow indoor in a shade or less sun?
Sponge gourd needs good sunlight. So we suggest to keep it outdoor in the sunlight for better growth.
1. What are the common diseases it gets?
Angular leaf spot is the common disease that affects Sponge gourd. So use Neem oil which protects the plant and acts as an organic pesticide. It is available with a user instruction.
1. How many days it takes to grow from seed to harvest stage?
Sponge gourd will take 120 to 150 days to harvest from the seeding. Till the harvesting, we need to provide water, fertilizer, compost, potting soil, neem oil.
2. How to identify whether it is ready for harvest?
Harvest the fruits at young stage before the skin becomes thick, otherwise the fruits will become inedible with lots of fiber. If you find any ripe gourd, just leave it in the plant itself. You can then collect the seeds when it completely dries out.
3. How to Harvest? Should we remove from the root or just cut and it grows again?
You can pluck the Sponge gourd directly from hand. But handle the plant gently while doing so. You can also cut the flowers from pruning secateurs safely, it will re-grow again.