Melon, Bitter (Bitter Melon) (Momordica charantia), packet of 10 seeds
Family: Gourd (Cucurbitaceae)
Perennial in Zones 10 to 12, grown as an annual in temperate climates, 50 to 60 days to harvest.
(Ku gua) Perennial vine native to Africa, currently pantropical. This is a choice green-skinned cultivar I first obtained in Yunnan during my travels–the plant is widely grown and appreciated in China. Traditional usage (TWM, TCM): bitter digestive, antidiabetic. Vines are vigorous, fruits are very large (we weighed our first one in this season at 1.2 lbs). The fruits are not particularly seedy and thus the 5 packet seed count. What I can guarantee is that these are from the new harvest, which makes a big difference on bitter melon–old seeds are nearly useless. The plants prefer full sun, warm days and nights, and a trellis. Insect-pollinated. A single vine can easily cover 10 square feet. Soak seeds overnight before planting. Pour very warm water in a pint jar and drop the seeds in there, allow to soak overnight, then plant the next day. Helps immensely. Sow the seeds about 1/2 inch deep in good potting soil in the greenhouse or a nice, composty hill of garden soil in the spring or summer garden and keep moist and very warm until germination, which takes about a week. Thin or transplant to 3 plants per hill and space hills 6 feet apart.
10 seeds per packet, Open Pollinated, Untreated, NO GMO’s