Gourds are one of the most popular items used in crafts as well as decoration pieces. They have a strong consistency and a very attractive and unique look. The best way to use gourds for decorative purposes is to first let them dry naturally and then make patterns on them. You can even make bowls, birdhouses and table decorations out of the dry gourds. In case you do not know much about drying gourds, we are at your service. In the following lines, we have provided complete information on how to dry gourds.
How to Dry Gourds
- For ensuring proper drying of the gourds, it is very necessary to make sure that they are fully ripe and mature. So, harvest your gourds only after the stem has turned brown.
- When harvesting the gourds, try to let a few inches of the stem remains attached to it. At the same time, do not twist the stem to break it. Rather, make use of pruning sheers or a sharp knife.
- Wash the gourds in a solution of water and bleach. This will not only help remove the soil from them, but also get rid of any bacteria or fungus that might harm them later on.
- Tie a rubber band or a strong string around the stem of the gourds.
- Now, hang the gourds in a dark area, with good natural ventilation. It can be a garage, a basement or even an open barn.
- If it is not possible to hang the gourds, place them on a wood board. In this case, make sure to turn them on a regular basis.
- While the gourds are drying, remove the mold from the skin on a regular basis. Use 10 percent bleach solution for the purpose.
- Gently shake the gourds after every month, to know whether they have dried or not. When you can hear the seeds rattling inside, it means your gourds have been perfectly dried.
- Never ever scrape the gourds in order to make them dry faster. It will only ruin your gourds, even before they get dried.
- Gourds emit a very pungent odor when they are drying. So, make sure to dry them in a place you do not frequent.
- It takes around 3-6 months for the gourds to get fully dried, depending upon their type, size and the environmental conditions in which they dry.
- Some of the gourds often rot while drying and it is very natural for this happen. Make sure to throw away the rotten gourds as soon as possible.