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Little River Cooperative

Loofah

Regular price $10.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $10.00 USD
Sale Sold out

Loofah
Luffa Aegyptiaca 

days to maturity:
plant spacing: 1 plant staked on a fence or large trellis
sunlight requirements: 8-14 hours
look out for: very aggressive vine - make sure to have plenty of space for it to grow
harvest notes: 150-200 days till harvestable
perennial

Luffas belong to the Cucurbitaceae or gourd family, along with their somewhat distant cousins squashes, watermelons, cucumbers, melons, and the hard-shelled gourds. In this country, luffas are usually grown for loofah sponges so the fruits are allowed to mature on the vine until they turn yellow or brownish, and then peeled to reveal the matrix of tough fibrous tissues inside that act as wonderful natural sponges. Luffa-derived sponges are tough on dirt but non-abrasive and perfect for washing your face, body, dishes, floor, or car. Crafters even use slices of the dried sponge in soaps to create pretty and useful all-in-one luffa soap rounds. But in many other parts of the world the flower buds, flowers, and very young fruit (which taste pretty much like summer squash) go in salads and other dishes.

Materials

All of our plants are produced using OMRI certified organic materials (potting mix, fertilizer & pesticides) however our nursery is not certified organic. Plants are shipped in compostable peat moss pots and we use heirloom & organic seeds whenever possible.

Shipping & Returns

We ship plant orders every Monday. Due to the nature of shipping plants we only offer expedited shipping for our live plant orders. Our returns & exchanges policy is also quite strict since its hard to control the quality of a plant once it leaves our facility, however we do our very best to make sure that each and every customer is satisfied with their plants. Read more about our policies here. 

Size

All of our plants are potted in 4" pots and their foliage size varies based on how large the plant is naturally when its root ball is the correct size for the pot. If a plant is too tall for our shipping box we may prune it to fit (bonus: many plants do better after being pruned since they make bushier growth). We do our very best to ship all of our plants in the "sweet spot" of maturity however so long as the roots have colonized the pot we will consider a plant mature enough to ship.

Care Instructions

When you receive your plant its critical to get it out of its box and into the light the day it arrives. It will also want to be removed from its compostable plastic wrapping and given fresh water to drink. Keep in mind, this plant was grown in the tropical humid climate of South Florida, so if it's terribly cold or dry where you are it'll need to be hardened off before planting outdoors. Visit our care instructions page for more thorough info about caring for your new plant friend.

  • What Our Customers Have to Say:

    This is a great, local organization with really knowledgeable & friendly staff. They make gardening easy and accessible, and I've purchased many high quality plants and equipment from them.
    -Kate Black (5 star google review)

  • And Another One:

    How lucky we are to have a resource like Little River Cooperative here in Miami, not only for the access they offer to a great selection of plants and produce, but also for the knowledge they provide and the sense of community they foster!
    -Nick Vagnoni (5 star google review)