The vegetable is a coarse, annual, herbaceous vine. Leaves are subrounded-ovate,
10 to 20 centimeters long, shallowly five-lobed, and heart-shaped at the base. Female
flowers are pedicelled, occurring singly in the axils of the leaves. Male flowers
are yellow, 2 centimeters long, borne in axillary racemes. Calyx lobes are lanceolate
and pointed. Fruit is oblong-oblanceolate, 20 to 25 centimeters long, about 5 centimeters
in diameter, green, and characterized by 10 prominent, longitudinal sharp angles. Seeds are
numerous and close-packed.
- Cultivated for its edible
fruit, but not established.
- In cultivation in the Old World Tropics.
- Fruit contains a bitter
Seed contains a fixed oil of glycerides of palmitic, stearic, and myristic
Fruit is considered demulcent, diuretic, nutritive.
Seeds considered purgative and emetic.
utiliezed and preparation
· Edible; cooked or fried, used in soups and sauces.
• Occasionally, stem tops with young leaves and flower buds used as leafy vegetable.
• Young fruits of cultivars, earten raw or pickled.
• Unripe fruit is a good source of calcium, iron and phosphorus.
• Fruit considered a fair source of vitamin B.
• Decoction of leaves for amenorrhea.
• Poultice of leaves for hemorrhoids.
• Juice of fresh leaves for granular conjunctivitis in children. Also used to prevent the lids from adhering at night from ecessive meibomian secretion.
• Juice of leaves also used externally for sores and various
• Pulp of fruit used internally, like calocynth, to cause vomiting and purging.
• Powdered dried fruit made into snuff for use by those afflicted with jaundice.
• Seed oil used for dermatitis.
• In Russia, roots is used as a purge.
• In Iran and Iraq infused seeds used as purgative and emetic.
• In India, roots is used for dropsy
and as laxative; leaf and fruit juice used to treat jaundice.
• In Java, leaf decoction used for
uremia and amenorrhea.
• In Bangladesh, pounded leaves used
for hemorrhoids, splenitis, leprosy. Juice of leaces used for conjunctivitis
• In West Africa, leaf extract of ridged gourd applied to sores caused by guinea worms; leaf sap used as eyewash in conjunctivitis; fruits and seeds used in herbal preparations for treatment of venereal diseases.
In Mauritius, seeds eaten to expel intestinal worms; leaf juice applied to eczema.
• Seed used as insecticidal.
• Sponge/Brush: Fibrous nature
of the mature fruit, devoid of pulp, dries into a matrix of stiff vascular bundles and used as a bath brush or sponge.
• Pesticide: In China, has been used as a pesticide.
• Fibers sometimes used for making hats.
• Trypsin Inhibitors: Study isolated two trypsin inhibitors, LA-1 and LA-2, both consisting of 28-29 amino acid residues, respectively. Both strongly inhibit trypsin by forming enzyme-inhibitor complexes.
• Constituents: Study isolated seven oleanane-type triterpene saponins, acutosides A-G.
• Antioxidants : An antioxidant-guided assay yielded eight compounds. Results showed consumption of sponge gourds can supply some antioxidant constituents to the human body.
• Antimicrobial / Water Disinfectant : Study showed the some antimicrobial potential of seeds and fruits of Lc as a disinfectant of drinking water. However, the disinfection performance was less that would be required to be considered reliable.
Common market vegetable.
Seeds and sponges in the cybermarkets.