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Cleaning Gourds

The Rotting Method Revised

The following method of cleaing a gourd is the rotting method from The Gourd Report #1, updated through more experimentation by one of our fellow gourding friends:

Hi Dan,
    Read your articles on drying/curing gourds and greatly appreciate all the info.  I just tried your rotting method and made a few changes.  Thought you might be interested in the results.  Used this on apple gourds averaging around 6 lbs.  I cut a hole in the top around 2 to 3 inches diameter.  Put them in a 5 gal bucket of water after removing what pulp and seeds I could.  Apples are extremely dense so not very much pulp can be removed.  Left it sit in the sun for 2 or 3 days and then removed softened (and slimy) pulp and put back in water.  Sit in the sun for another 2 or 3 days and then removed softened pulp again.  Put back in the water.  I kept this up for 2 weeks and by that time all the pulp was gone,  the gourd had very little bad odor and the skin came off with little effort.  I sat the gourd in a south facing window and in a few days was completely dry and odor free.  I have three buckets with gourds rotting now but had to move them into the house because the water gets too cold at night and slows down the rotting process.  Surprisingly enough, very little odor comes off them even though they are uncovered.  After drying, the lids still fit the gourds and can be used.
    Thanks again for all the information you make available and hope this is some use to you.  I number each one of my gourds when I harvest them and then keep records of different processes I use in drying/curing.  A lot of work but a lot of enjoyment.
                                          Gene - printed by permission

If you have a tip or trick that you use on gourds, please send them to us, we are building a tips page.  If you have a tutorial, send that to us along with a link to your website.  This will gain you more links to your website, and you will get to share your idea's with lots of other gourd crafters.


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