The Q&A Archives: Birdhouse Gourds

Question: I'm looking for a gourd that you can make birdhouses from. Can you help me?

Answer: Bottle Gourds (Lagenaria siceraria) are the ones used to make birdhouses. They take a long growing season, so choose the sunniest planting site possible and start the seeds as early as you can in the spring time. After the gourds have ripened on the vine (usually when frost kills the vines back), take them indoors and allow them to cure for several months, in a cool, dry place. They're ready to use when the seeds inside rattle when you shake the gourds. Then drill a hole (one-inch for small birds, two or two-and-a-half inches for larger birds). Drill one or two holes on the bottom for drainage and two more holes in the top so you can string wire for a hanger. You can purchase seeds for Large Bottle Gourds from Burpee, either toll-free (800) 888-1447, or online at:

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