How to Clean a Gourd

Option 1

1) You will need:
  •  A large container for your gourd.
  • Scrubbers: i.e. stainless steel, copper scrubber
  • A scraper to clean inside the gourd, if your gourd is cut.
  • A smooth-bladed knife
  • Wet towel (opitional)
  • Dish soap (optional)
  • Face mask
2) Whether you clean inside or outside, fill your container with hot water, this helps to loosen the skin. Allow this to soak for 15 minutes or longer, using towel to keep the gourd wet.
3) Gently scrub the gourd with the scrubber until all the skin is removed. If the skin is thick, you may have to repeat this process.
4) Rinse the gourd completely and let dry in a shady area, to keep the sun from drying it too quickly and cracking the gourd.
Option 2
1) You will need:
  • Inexpensive garden soil
  • Large container to bury the gourd(s) in.
  • Face mask
2) Layer soil and gourd(s), making sure that all gourd surfaces are in contact with soil.
3) Wait 3-5 days, remove from soil and hose off. If necessary, scrub loose skin. If it doesn’t appear clean, put it back in the soil for another day or two, repeat the process.
4) Rinse the gourd completely and let dry in a shady area, to keep the sun from drying it too quickly and cracking the gourd.
To clean the stem:
1) When cleaning a gourd, remember to clean the stem. A clean stem is the difference of possibly winning a ribbon or being disqualified.
2) Mix a mild solution of bleach with water, 1 part bleach to 3 parts water.
3) Turn the gourd up-side down, dip stem in bleach solution. It can be left in solution until stem turns white.
4) Brush the stem to remove dirt and mold.
Inside a cut gourd:
After cleaning the outside of your gourd, be sure to clean the inside of all seeds and skin, scraping the opaque inner skin completely clean. You can use anything that will remove the membrane – an old breadknife, a sharp stone, a purchased scraper, an ice cream scoop, a grapefruit knife, some sheetrock mesh –  try a couple things and see what works for you.