Luffas have had bitter taste more and more???

chueh(7B)October 18, 2012

The first one or two luffas tasted normal. Then, each one after that slightly got bitter and bitter. The most recent ones I ate tasted very bitter. It was not like this two years ago when I had luffas. I skipped last year, but planted bitter melons last year. This year, I planted both. Have the luffa plants I have this year picked up the bitter flavor from the bitter melons?

I planted watermelons this year too, yet my watermelons tasted like watermelons without any bitterness...

What has been going on possibly?

Thanks

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Never considered loofahs edible anyway with the possible exception of very young, small ones. Mature, older gourds will always be bitter and the older and larger they are, the more bitter. But it is due to the age/size and growing condition changes (temps, nutrients, water, etc.) and not from any crossing. Just as with cukes and other similar plants, increased bitterness is most often tied to insufficient or inconsistent water supplies.

Cross pollination doesn't affect the fruit itself in this season, only the seeds are affected and any CP will show up NEXT year if those seeds are planted. That is regardless of the plant in question.

You can learn more about this over on the Squash and Gourds forum here.

Dave

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 1:44PM
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farmerdill

Concur: Bitter gourd (Momordica charantia) is an entirely different plant from Luffas ( Luffa cylindrica or Luffa acutangula. They do not cross. Like most species some varieties are better for eating than others. You may want to consider a different variety. Many varieties are grown only for making bath sponges.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2012 at 3:19PM
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chueh(7B)

I see. Thanks for the replies, but I don't understand that the plants have seemed to have adequate water (I have watered them on a timer)..

    Bookmark   October 20, 2012 at 9:21PM
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