Ocean Lifestyles

Ocean Lifestyles

Did you know there are a variety of squash, which grows in a sponge? They are called luffa gourds and are linked to all other gourds.

They take a long time to increase - up to 180 days - but they produce a fruit which when dried makes a fibrous sponge that can be used to clean almost everything.

Start seeds indoors 3 to 4 weeks before the average date of your last spring frost. Grow under lights and planted in full sun in the garden, at the same time you plant your tomatoes. Improve the soil with compost and peat. Planting a transplant to every hill and hill space part 5 to 6 feet in all directions. The black plastic mulch or organic mulch to conserve moisture and reduce growth weeds.

Make sure they get at least an inch of rain or equivalent per week.

The luffa gourds form the vine as it grows. Fruits that first formed near the base of the vine will be ready to prime. They are willing to take when the skin became brown clear and they feel lighter, have lost some of their weight through evaporation of water. Most other fruits will remain on the vine until the vines turn brown and wither at the end of the season.

Remove the skin before drying to use as sponges. You can detach Skin gourds mature loofah by dropping them on the ground. This will cut their skin, which are then easily removed. Less luffa gourds mature - those whose the skin is still green - are best held by soaking in a very weak solution of bleach and water (1 tablespoon bleach to 1 gallon water). Let them soak for a few hours, then rub the skin with your hands.

Remove seeds and cut the loofah you in all forms desire. Ask the cut shapes on a screen or a rack to dry completely. Drying can last from 2 to 6 weeks, depending on the size of the individual loofah. They are finished when the fibers touch rough and dry to the touch and feel light for their size.

You can choose to clean or rub almost any what. They keep longer if you store them on a rack or somewhere that allows them to dry thoroughly after use and air travel around them.

Sponges containing luffa gourds are not sea sponges, but they work so that sea sponges do not - They exfoliate your skin, leaving it feeling soft and fresh.

And they work equally well as a purifier for your nonstick pans.

Copyright Sharon Sweeny, 2009. All rights reserved.

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