Do you know where Loofah’s come from?

We visited our granddaughters village yesterday in Sakon Nakong which is in Northern Thailand. I was given these brown crispy long thingsSAM_7934 which when shaken sounded like a baby’s rattle. I asked what it was and due to language misinterpretation thought it was one of the long bitter gourds you can buy and which are used for soup.

Another conversation ensued and my grandson was shaking it and banging it and asking what is this for? For me to plant I said.

The conversation then turned to how big was it and these low growing plants were pointed out to me…Oh I said ..they grow like Pumpkins….Yes mum( all the Thai Girls) call me mum.

Some time later …the kids were playing sword fights with them and one of the uncles started to peel this ” thing” and I was amazed at what was revealedSAM_7933….A loofah…

I have bought many loofahs over the years and always assumed that like sponges they originated from the sea.

How ” wrong” can you be…they are from a plant which is a member of the cucumber family and they grow on vines.

With their skins on, they look like zucchini sized cukes. They’re quite attractive and fast growing. The vines can reach 20 feet if they’re happy, and the fruits form on big yellow flowers.

The luffa, also spelled loofah, usually means the fruit of the two species L. aegyptiaca and L. acutangula. The fruit of these species is cultivated and eaten as a vegetable.

When grown, it doesn’t look like a loofah found in stores. It’s usually a foot long and has a yellow flower that grows with it. The plant produces male flowers first, so the first season does not produce fruit and like a cucumber, gourd or pumpkin, it’s edible,” .It is only edible when young, as when it matures, the fibers dry out, causing the insides to fall out. The hard shell left over can then be used as a sponge. While loofah can be found in stores, it can be fun to grow one. A  loofah needs about 100 to 180 days to mature and it grows best if the soil temperature is about 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

I have lots of seeds as when dry you can bang and the seeds come a tumbling out…so tomorrow I will be planting some and see how they grow.

In the meantime I have my own loofah to useSAM_7935 ..fresh and new from Sakon Nakon, Thailand.

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36 thoughts on “Do you know where Loofah’s come from?

    1. blondieaka Post author

      Join this very exclusive club Steve it sounds like very many others didn’t and yes it does look like a boiled egg being peeled. It has also been likened to a loaf of bread..most interesting what the eye percieves 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
    1. blondieaka Post author

      Thank you so much..I didn’t either until very recently and now I am nuturing my little plants as you no doubt have seen 🙂
      Your blog is pretty cool to..could I use it as my “D” for my next A-Z people challenge ? It would be a lovely example and you hopefully would get more traffic to your blog 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. blondieaka Post author

        So am I ..it’s so warm here things dry out really quickly..but I am also seeing which is better seeds which I have washed but not dried and dried seeds/pips, we will see 🙂 I am trying to plant everything (within)reason that I like and use :)I know it’s not zapped with any nasties then 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Cooking For The Time Challenged

        You have inspired me. I actually checked on line, and they are available even from Amazon. Until your post, I had never heard of this. I am so excited! I think that together with my DIY facial scrub, it could make a great holiday present. Thank you!!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. blondieaka Post author

        Cool….good luck..I am going to plant my seeds today..have been doing more reading and it’s amazing how many uses it has..such a versatile plant 🙂 We will have to compare plants? As it’s tropical here I am hoping they grow well..were are you in the world?

        Liked by 1 person

  1. irlandairlanda

    Thanks to share these information. I also thought that the sponges, ca
    ome from the sea. Now I know that they come from a tree, the cucumber family and they grow on vines. Incredeble!. Magic Hugs.

    Like

    Reply
    1. blondieaka Post author

      So do I and I am still a little amazed as I just never thought that this brown dried piece of ? would produce that! Going to plant my seeds and see what happenes..will keep you posted 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      Reply

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