Chayote (Sechium edule) 佛手瓜
Chayote (Sechium edule) is native in Mexico. It is an annual vine here in cold climate, it is perennial vegetable in warm climate. Its shoots and fruit are vegetable. Very easy to grow in any full sun to partial shade location in moist soil with support to cling on. Plant has male and female flowers. Male flower is small with 5 pale yellow petals and yellow centre. Female flower with a tiny undeveloped mini squash.
Squash can be cooked for stir-fry, soup… Its fast growing tender shoots is great for stir-fry.
In late summer to fall the squash can be harvested when the outside layer is tender. When squash got harvest late the outside layer is tough, when you cook the squash you will need to peel the layer. There is a seed in the squash. When you place the squash in sunny location such as window sill indoor, the seed will start to sprout. Then you can plant the sprout squash in the pot or ground to grow.
佛手瓜是容易栽種生長快速的不耐寒多年生草本藤蔓. 嫩莖葉可摘下炒食,稱為龍鬚菜. 雄花和雌花外觀不同,雌花有迷你的未授粉的小瓜很容易辨認,雄花則無小瓜連著. 瓜應在成熟後外皮尚嫩時收成,這時可連皮煮食;倘若收成太晚瓜皮變粗硬則應削皮再煮. 可炒或煮湯的很多料理的方法.
要種的話取成熟度較高外皮較硬的瓜,裡面的種子較為成熟適合用來種植. 將瓜放在有光線溫暖的室內靠窗處讓它裡面的種子發芽,發芽的瓜可以種在大盆或是地植在適當的地方,最好是全日照到半日照的環境,保濕並需有支架供其攀爬. 很快就有瓜可收成.