This year one of my “new” crops is the birdhouse gourd. This is the first time I’ve grown gourds of any kind so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was delighted when I started to see the first gourds forming on the vines twining over the “rustic” trellis I had built for them out of branches lashed together with sisal twine.

Birdhouse Gourd

Here’s one of the larger ones—large enough to be an actual birdhouse, I believe. There are few more only a little smaller that I think would work as well. I was scouting around among the vines to get an idea of how many there were when I came across this…


My thumb probably isn’t the best scale I could have used, but you can still tell it’s huge! How did it escape notice until now? The crossbar it’s hanging from has cracked and sagged. When I was planting these I had wrens, nuthatches and chickadees in mind. Now I’m thinking more along the line of California condors. They’re kind of cavity nesters, right? I only hope now that we have the right kind of weather to ripen and cure these things. If they turn out well, I would grow them again, building stronger supports and keeping a closer eye on them, of course.


9 thoughts on “Gourdzilla

  1. I guess huge is a relative term. Was reading about gourds and am just boggled by the size of some of the big round ones people grow. Probably not an option for my zone, but wow!

  2. That would really make a lovely bird house. I planted some ornamental gourds this year for use as a decoration inside the house. Now I am sorry none of them look big enough for a bird house. Amelia

    1. I don’t know if you have purple martins or anything like them in England. They’re a beautiful large swallowlike bird. If you google “purple martin gourd houses” there are images of real and plastic ones.

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