This is a blog about the pursuits of Naturalist Alan Russo to incorporate all things Natural, especially Plants, into his daily life. Living close to Nature has always been a passion of mine and I try, with natures help, to live a Healthy lifestyle for myself and for the Earth.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

What to do with my Dinosaurs?


  Every year I try to plant something new/different around my chicken coop. This serves a couple of practical purposes. One, I have a ready made fence for vines to clime on, and two, the chickens have ample shade in the heat of the summer which thy really appreciate. Also I get to plant some cool stuff I don't have room in my gardens for. I've had Luffa, bottleneck gourds, mango melons and a permanent section for Passion Flower Vines. This year I planted "Dinosaur gourds", also known as "Caveman's Club", they are a very unique looking gourd which I have always wanted to grow.
 I have tried before, but for some reason they didn't grow. But this year they really went crazy, so much so I have had to trim them back several times as they were starting to take over and smothering my Honeysuckle Vines, ( see:  http://ethnobotanist128.blogspot.com/2011/05/japanese-honeysuckle.html) which also have a permanent spot on the fence.
 As cool as these Gourds are I have no idea what to do with them! There is not much info on them, but as far as I can tell they are not Edible. I have seen a site where someone made a Dinosaur looking sculpture out of one but that's about it. I also e-mailed the head of a Gourd Society to get some more info on them and the women wrote back that she never heard of them!
 So, if anyone has any definitive info on these unique Gourds, please feel free to e-mail me or write some comments to help us get some info.


  1. I don't think I can help you with your dino-gourd dilemma... But, I must know -- do you get heavy frosts where you live? I would like to grow Passion Flowers for their medicinal qualities, but I don't think they would mature in time with flowers before killing frosts hit. I don't know much about them really, so if you have any tips for me I'd appreciate it! :)

  2. Tiffany,
    We do get some deep freezes and snow but they usually don't last long, certainly nothing like where you live. My growing season is longer (I'm from NY so I can compare).
    Even in NC the vines don't start coming up till it is consistently warm later on in the spring. On the other hand if you want to grow them for their Nervine qualities, you only need the flowering vine, and the flowers happen rather quickly and continue all summer,so if winter comes before you get fruit that's no problem. Though the fruit is really good! If you like I can send you some fruits for the seeds and/or roots if you want to give it a try.
    A little more info and photos: http://ethnobotanist128.blogspot.com/2010/09/passionflower.html

  3. Alan, that would be awesome! Let me know how much shipping is and I can send you a check! The photos of the fruit are so different looking than the passionfruit I see in the store -- are they the same? The flower is so odd looking, too!

  4. E-mail me theplantcd@gmail.com with your shipping info etc.
    The one you buy in the store,same Genus, different species.