The cucuzzi we raise is an Italian type. We sell it as cucuzzi or pale green snake gourd. Some also call it bottle gourd. The plant is widely recognized and enjoyed by people from many cultures from Southern Europe to South East Asia. Cucuzzi is very aggressive and productive in our climate and we sell cucuzzi or the pale green snake gourd by the pound.
We also raise a striped snake gourd. Striped snake gourd grows very slowly in our climate. Some years, the plant is not very productive. The plant we raise has delicate vines, small white flowers, and staminate flowers in a cluster. Our customers from the South of India tell us the plant is slightly different from back home. We are still seeking a good seed source for the version from the South of India. Striped Snake Gourd is often ready by mid-August at the Tree Farm -- earlier in hot summers, later in cool years. Due to the difficulty of raising striped snake gourd in our climate, we price striped snake gourd by the each.
Cucuzzi or Snake Gourd can be picked by grasping the fruit near the stem end and gently twisting and pulling the fruit. Some people prefer to use a knife or pruner to cut the stem. The vines are covered with relatively soft spines. Some tough-skinned people are not bothered by these spines. Others are more comfortable wearing long sleeves and gloves to pick these vegetables.
Cucuzzi is normally ready in early August and continues to bear until frost. Striped Snake Gourd is often ready by mid-August depending on the season.