Hello Hive and Gardeners
Growing some important vegetables in a garden can be both a lucrative business and a life saver.
You get to have handy healthy and green leaves for the family meals at all times.
Fluted pumpkin is a natural blood boosting leaves, both the leaves and the seeds can be used for cooking. My family and I use the leaves for making soup while the Igbo tribe in Nigeria use both the leaves and seed for cooking.
The first remedy for anaemia is the water extract of the leaves, this can be mixed with milk or malt and administered orally until the blood level rises, it can be taking at least twice a day.
Scientific paper works on the mechanics of why fluted pumpkin increases the blood level can be obtained here but this explanations may not be well understood by a local medicine who based their facts on beliefs and continuous use of the leaves.
Important of fluted pumpkin
Aside the blood boasting facts, these plant contains lots of proteins and dietary fiber while the seeds in rich in oil which can be used as anti ulcers here
Here is a simple way to grow fluted pumpkin in a garden at home.
- Prepare beds and ridges
Ugu leaves grow well in a a well drained loamy soil. Waterlogged soil does not aid proper growth of the plant.
Ploughing can be done with simple hoes and cutlass to raise beds or ridges add manure and water the site, fertilizer rich in Nitrogen can be used as this aids the growth of leafy vegetables.
Fertilizer application can be repeated after seeds germinates and started growing.
- Planting of seeds.
This is a whole pumpkin bud and how it looks like after maturity.
This is broken and the multiples of seeds inside can be planted in two's with their germinating tips facing upward. A healthy seed germinates in 10-15days but this can be shortened with some seed treatment before planting.
Seed treatment involves air drying of seeds after removing from the pod to reduce moisture contents and scraping of the surface of seeds with sand.
The healthy growing seeds can be visibly seen above.
- Watering and weeding.
Watering can be done twice daily depending on soil temperature after planting until seeds germinate.
Hence it can be reduce to once.
Weeding around seed beds should be cleared as well.
Fluted pumpkin can be harvested after 30days of planting special skill is required so as not to destroy the sprouting seed pods. Picking of healthy leaves can be done far away from the healthy growing tips of ugu stem seen here
This is a whole idea and process of growing healthy fluted pumpkin.
We have this in our garden and sometimes my late mum would grow hectares of the leaves in our family farm, it is both a lucrative business growing and selling the leaves.