SPINE GOURD (MOMORDICA DIOICA): AN UNDERUTILIZED VEGETABLE WITH HIGH NUTRITIONAL AND MEDICINAL VALUES
Spine gourd is consumed by tribal groups living around the natural forest areas, especially at higher altitudes, where the native folks consume it as a daily vegetable. This vegetable did not gain much popularity until it was discovered to have a high nutritional and medicinal value. An experiment was conducted to identify growth characteristics including propagation methods, best time of planting, productivity and the economics of cultivation. The experiment consisted of 18 genotypes collected from various naturally growing forest areas. These were planted during July-August 2006. Growth and yield attributes and their correlations were observed. Growth parameters like the number of fruit/plant and fruit yield/plant exhibited high heritability, which coupled with high genetic advance as a percent of mean, indicated criteria for selection of suitable genotypes. The genotypes AAI/S-1 and AAI/S-4 were found to be high yielding with an average yield of 606 g and 649 g/plant, respectively. All the genotypes were tested for nutritional value, but there were no significant difference among the genotypes. The average nutritional value per 100 g edible fruit was found to contain 84.1% moisture, 7.7 g carbohydrate, 3.1 g protein, 3.1 g fat, 3.0 g fibre and 1.1 g minerals. It also contained small quantities of essential vitamins like ascorbic acid, carotene, thiamin, riboflavin and niacin. It was concluded that this crop can be successfully cultivated in the plains and urban areas, as well as in countries where sub-tropical and tropical conditions prevail. This crop can provide additional nutrients and help the body develop natural immunity from many common ailments.
Singh, D., Bahadur, V., Singh, D.B. and Ghosh, G. (2009). SPINE GOURD (MOMORDICA DIOICA): AN UNDERUTILIZED VEGETABLE WITH HIGH NUTRITIONAL AND MEDICINAL VALUES. Acta Hortic. 809, 241-249