Bottle gourd- Planting activities

Bottle gourd is propagated through seeds. The recommended seed rate is 1.2-1.6 kg/acre. The best season of planting is January to March and September to December.

For rainfed crop, sowing can be started after the receipt of first few showers during May-June.

The land is prepared well by thorough ploughing or digging. Pits of 60 cm diameter and 30-45 cm depth are taken at 3.0 m x 3.0 m spacing for crop grown in pandal.

For crop trailing on the ground, make pits at a spacing of 2 m in rows and 3-4 m apart.

Lime or dolomite @ 1-3 Kg/cent has to be applied depending on soil acidity. This should be followed by adding organic manure @ 90 Kg/cent along with top soil.

The planting is done in raised beds during rainy season and in trenches during summer season. Seeds are sown @ four or five per pit at 1-2 cm depth. Deeper sowing delays germination.

The seeds are soaked in water for 24 hours prior to planting for better and quicker germination.

The seeds will germinate in about 4-5 days. Remove unhealthy plants after two weeks and retain two or three plants

Apply recommended basal dose of fertilizers at the time of planting. A time lag of ten days should be given between application of lime and fertilizers.