Growing Luffa, also Loofah, plant sponge

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
      S S P            

(Best months for growing Luffa in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays P = Sow seed

  • Grow in seed trays, and plant out in 4-6 weeks. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 68°F and 86°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 18 - 30 inches apart
  • Harvest in 11-12 weeks. Use as a back scratcher.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Peas, Beans, Onions, Sweetcorn
  • Avoid growing close to: Potatoes
  • Luffa on vine

This type of squash while not strictly a vegetable can be eaten when young. They are more commonly grown to use when mature and dried.

The plants need warmth to grow successfully. Keep inside until all risk of frost is gone.

They grow on vines similar to cucumbers.

A large loofa makes a great back scratcher. Luffa can be cut into many shapes for scrubbing pads, padding, and other uses.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Luffa

The luffa flowers and fruits are soft and edible when young and are sometimes cooked and eaten like squash or okra. Loofah has been an important food source in many Asian cultures. The leaves and vines should not be eaten.

Your comments and tips

23 Jul 20, Dan (USA - Zone 5a climate)
How much sun do they need
20 Jul 20, Martin Dale (Canada - Zone 8a Mild Temperate climate)
Hello from Vancouver! Thank you for this wonderful site. I wonder if you could tell me if Loofahs can be grown in this part of the country? It would be great if so. Would they need a greenhouse? Thank you! Martin
23 Jul 20, colleen (USA - Zone 10b climate)
You could, with two caveats: they take forever to mature (like 200+ days), and they take a lot of space (like 6-9 meters). So I think it's too late for you to grow them outside this year, but you could still grow them in a LARGE greenhouse...they set fruit during short days so time your lighting accordingly. Your best bet is probably to start them indoors in peat-type pots in late winter for next year.
09 Jul 20, Shemainee Carranza (USA - Zone 10a climate)
When is the lates to plant Luffa for zone 10?
09 Jul 20, Liz (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Check this page www.gardenate.com/plant/Luffa?zone=15
11 Mar 20, Karen (Australia - tropical climate)
Will these grow in Darwin .its wet season now
11 Mar 20, Anon (Australia - tropical climate)
Go to the Luffa page again and read, it is all there.
02 Feb 20, Hanmelie (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
We're can I buy loofah seeds in Gauteng?
03 Feb 20, anon (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Look up seed selling companies on the internet in SA.
02 Feb 20, Kristina Fischer (USA - Zone 9a climate)
I was just given a huge jar of very healthy looking loofah seeds. Our cold frame just collapsed after six years of heavy use and we don't have funds for another one. Would it be possible to plant the loofah seeds in peat pots in April and still harvest loofah by fall?
Showing 1 - 10 of 154 comments

I was just given a huge jar of very healthy looking loofah seeds. Our cold frame just collapsed after six years of heavy use and we don't have funds for another one. Would it be possible to plant the loofah seeds in peat pots in April and still harvest loofah by fall?

- Kristina Fischer

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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