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Video: Lagenaria, Or Gorlyanka - A Vegetable Of All Trades. Calabas. Care, Cultivation, Reproduction. Photo
How many names this vegetable has - Lagenaria, Gorlyanka, Calabas, Indian cucumber, and Vietnamese zucchini. The birthplace of this interesting culture is India. Even the ancient Romans made various dishes from the fruits of Lagenaria. Inhabitants of Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Pacific Islands still use them to make smoking pipes, dishes, musical instruments and toys. The long flexible stems of the lagenarius are used in weaving. Oil is obtained from the seeds of Lagenaria. Unripe fruits are eaten.
In our country, lagenaria is not widespread among gardeners, although there are amateurs who use grown young fruits for food, and use well-ripened fruits to make boxes, ashtrays, vases.
Nutritional value of lagenaria
Young long-fruited fruits with thin skin when cooked stewed, boiled, fried have a delicate taste (similar to zucchini). In addition, they are pickled, canned, and delicious caviar is obtained from them. Young fruits 50-60 cm long are eaten.
Lagenaria also has healing properties, for example, the pulp of Lagenaria is recommended for stomach catarrh, in folk medicine, young petioles and fruits are used for cardiovascular diseases.
Lagenaria is characterized by strong growth: up to 12 - 15 meters and more. Fruits grow up to 1.2 m, and in the south - up to 3 m, weighing from 4 to 15 kg. The stem is creeping, has lateral branches and whiskers, female and male flowers.
Lagenaria's fruits are of various shapes: cylindrical, pear-shaped, spherical, etc. Ripe fruits are not edible, since the fruits form a strong wooden shell. Lagenaria is a thermophilic plant, like a cucumber, so it prefers warm, windless areas. For example, along the fence, near the wall of the house, etc.
An important clarification: lagenaria blooms from evening to night, therefore, flowers must be pollinated manually.
The time from sowing Lagenaria seeds to the appearance of flowers is 110-120 days. The growing season (before seed ripening) is 200-210 days. Therefore, to get fruit, it is necessary to grow seedlings. Seeds are sown in large pots 10 × 10, 12 × 12 cm. Sowing seeds for seedlings is carried out in late March - early April.
The seeds are large and very dense, so it is advisable to soak them in stimulants for 24 hours and germinate for 5 - 6 days in sawdust, or on yarl at a temperature of 23 - 25 ° C. After the seeds are nailed, they are sown one at a time in a pot to a depth of 3 - 4 cm. Seedlings grow on the windowsill for 30 - 35 days, like pumpkin and zucchini.
Planting seedlings lagenarii
The soil for the lagenaria should be fertile, it is dug up to a depth of 40 cm. Humus, organic fertilizers and wood ash are added to the hole where the seedlings will be planted, everything is thoroughly mixed.
Lagenaria seedlings are planted in late May - early June. If the plants are planted nearby, then the recommended distance between them is -1m.
After planting, the pot of plants should be tamped lightly and watered again. At first, when the nights are still cool, the plant can be covered with a covering material. When the main stem reaches a height of 1 m, they make supports or guide them along the fence, because lagenaria clings well to the mustache. When the main stem reaches the greatest height, pinch the top, and also pinch the tops of the lateral shoots, as is done with a cucumber.
No more than 5 fruits are left, and if fruits are needed long, they are left even less, up to 2 - 3.
Some gardeners grow lagenaria as an exotic plant for the sake of interest, because the fruits of lagenaria can be cut off in parts rather than plucked. The place of the cut will become corky, and the fruit will grow again.