Kiwano grow and care – herbaceous vine of the genus Cucumis also known as Horned melon or Cucumis metuliferus, Kiwano is an annual plant grow for the edible fruits and can grow in desert, mediterranean, subtropics, temperate or tropics climate and growing in hardiness zone 4+, in hardiness zone 4-5 might not bear fruits without right care.
Leaves color green leaves become hairy mature, the shape of the leaves is heart.
Flower color yellow with five lobs, female contain semi fruits that looks like a little fruit and male flower are smaller without
Fruit color yellow, the seeds cover with juicy jelly like (remind passion-fruit) the peal is yellow-orange with spines, the taste similar to cucumber with little bit sweet banana, seeds edible.
Recommend to watering on the ground and not watering on the leaves or the fruits, need trellising depend on the species
What is the best way to start growing? Plant / Seedling / Seed
Is it necessary to graft or use vegetative reproduction? No
Difficulties or problems when growing: ?
Planting season: End of the winter in cold climate spring
Pests and diseases: Powdery mildew, aphids, Cucumber Beetles
Pruning season: All season
How to prune: Infected leaves needed to take out, also try to clean them
Size of the plant? 1-4 m, 40-160 inches
Growth speed in optimal condition: Fast growing / Medium growing
Water requirement: Small amount of water / Average amount of water
Light conditions in optimal condition for growing: Full Sun / Half Shade
Is it possible to grow indoor as houseplant? No
Growing is also possible in a planter /flowerpot / containers: Yes, planting in containers need to be at least 10-20L (2.5-5 gallons), well-drained soil, the plant not react well to overwater, need to make enough holes in the container for good drainage also choosing soil for container important and need to be soil well ventilated, can be potting mix or peat soil with perlite, when use bottom for the pot need that it will dry in the same day.
Bloom season: Spring / Summer
General information about the flower Yellow with five lobs, female contain semi fruits that looks like a little fruit and male flower are smaller without
Pollination is done by: Bees +
Fruit harvest season: Summer / Autumn
Fruits pests or diseases: Powdery mildew
What can be done with big quantities of Kiwano fruits? Eat raw, salad
Work requirements on the fruit: Sometimes to space it from the ground
How long does it take to bear fruit? 50-80 days
How to grow Kiwano from seeds
Sowing requirement: Easy to sow no special treatment, sowing temperature better to sow in 21-25C (70-77F)
Saving seeds until sowing: Room temperature, dry place
Sowing season: Spring (but in warm weather possible in the summer) and in cold climate start in the winter indoor
How to plant: Better to plant it in light soil that will be well ventilated and keep the moist like vermiculite
Planting spacing – How far apart to plant: Depend if trellising 40*50cm (16*20 inches) when crawling 1*1.25m (40-50 inches), sowing to transplanting 5*5cm (2*2 inches)
Depth of Sowing: 1-2cm (0.5-1 inch) from the top
Conditions for seeds germinate: Moist soil, full sun
Watering requires for Seeds: Average amount of water, don’t let it dry
Germination time: 5-20 days
Condition of seedling: Warm weather, big amount of water, full sun, place to trellising