Become more eco-friendly and sustainable by growing the household staple, luffa sponge. This plant will give you the best of both world, as luffas can also be cooked and eaten like courgettes.
Sowing Period: January to March
Planting Period: May to June
Harvesting Period: August to October
To grow a luffa sponge, firstly, allow the first fruit that appears on the vine to mature (leave for as long as possible) until the skin has turned dark yellow or brown. This will give the sponge that extra boost of fibre! Once the skin begins to brown, cut the luffa from the vine and submerge in a trough/bucket of water until the skin can be easily peeled away from the sponge-like inside.
Wash several times to remove any flesh and allow to dry, shaking to remove seeds. If you want a white luffa, soak it in a weak bleach solution for a few minutes before rinsing and drying.
Seeds should be started off 2 seeds per 9cm pot early in the year in a good quality seed compost 2cm (1") deep in a heated propagator 25-28°C and kept moist, not wet. Germination up to 21 days. As plants grow they need to be potted on into larger containers and kept inside or in a heated greenhouse (small canes will be needed as they begin to climb) until late May when they can be planted into a cold or heated greenhouse 50cm apart. Plants will need netting/canes or wires to grow up and should be given plenty of space. Limit each plant to 5-6 fruit to encourage larger luffa to form.
- EAN trade5011567549920