Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A gourd is a hollow, dried shell of a fruit in the Cucurbitaceae family of plants. Gourds can be used as a number of things, including bowls or bottles. Gourds are also used as resonating chambers on certain musical instruments including some stringed instruments and drums. Instruments of this type are common in Africa, South Asia, and the Caribbean. Gourds are also used as a tool for sipping yerba mate by means of a bombilla, in Uruguay, Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil, where it is called "cuia" (kOOya). Birdhouse gourds, (Lagenaria siceraria), are commonly used in southern USA for group housing for purple martins, which reputedly help control mosquitoes.
Day-blooming gourds are pollinated the same as Squash, and commercial plantings should have bee hives supplied. Night blooming gourds are pollinated by moths, which are normally present in adequate supply unless they are drawn off by night lights in the area.
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