Drying Birdhouse Gourds - Knowledgebase Question

Houston, TX
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Question by caace
November 14, 1997
How do you dry birdhouse gourds?

Answer from NGA
November 14, 1997
Gourds should be harvested from the plants when the stems turn brown. Brush off any dirt and place them on racks to air dry. One way is to place them on window screens propped up so the air can circulate above and below. Or you can tie a string to the stem and hang them to dry. Large gourds may take 3 to 6 months to dry, small gourds should dry in 3-4 weeks.

After they're completely dry you can cut holes of the proper size for the type of bird you want to attract. Scoop out the seeds and pulp, then soak the gourd in some warm, soapy water for about 15 minutes. Scrub inside and out, and allow to dry. Drill a few 1/8 inch holes in the bottom to allow any water that gets in to drain, and attach a strong screw-eye at the top for hanging.

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