Bottle gourd is also known as calabash, opo squash, and long melon. It is another vine crop grown for its fruit, which can be harvested young as a vegetable or allowed to mature, dry and be used as a utensil or musical instrument.
It is a tropical/subtropical plant typically grown in China, South Asia and Africa. The fresh fruit is light green with a smooth skin and is white inside. Bottle gourd comes in a number of shapes and sizes and can be large, small, round or long. As a vegetable, bottle gourd is used in stir-fries or soups in China, dried and marinated in strips for sushi in Japan, or cooked as a summer squash. In some areas, the seeds are toasted, ground and mixed with other ingredients to make a drink. The shoots, tendrils and leaves can also be eaten as greens.