African Horned Cucumber - Kiwano
African Horned Cucumber - Kiwano
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African Horned Cucumber - Kiwano

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Cucumis metuliferus

Alternatively known as the jelly melon, gaka, kiwano or metulon, the African Horned Cucumber is a traditional food in Africa.

It's an African climbing plant that was given the name "kiwano" around the 1930's, when it began to be imported into Australia and New Zealand, because, once cut, had a vague resemblance to the kiwi.

The fruit has horn-like spines which are blunt, not sharp, and the fruit ripens with a greeny-orange skin and lime green, jelly-like flesh. The flavour is described as tasting like a combination of passionfruit and lime. Traditionally it is used as a snack or in salads, and can be roasted, eaten whole or chopped up.

Sow approx. 1-2cm deep, Spring and Summer, full sun, moist well drained compost rich soil. Germination approx. 14-21 days.  Frost tender annual.  Approx. 120 days days to maturity.  

Pick regularly to encourage more fruit, leaving approx. 2cm of stem on each fruit to improve storage. Try to avoid picking fruit too early as taste is not as good.  If fruit is left to over-ripen, it will burst open and self seed.  Avoid overhead watering to reduce disease.  

10 seeds per packet