I guess I never really thought too much about where they came from, but when I was walking to the beach I had seen these vines with pretty yellow flowers. They looked a lot like a cucumber plant and I assumed they were some kind of wild variety.
As time went by I watched the very cucumber like gourds grow fairy large. One day I was looking at them when a local man walked by and said “those are loofah, we use them in the shower.” I know what loofahs are, I thought, I’ve had many, but surely these big cucumber looking things aren’t real loofahs.
He told me you dry them, and then peel the skin off. I had to see for myself so I picked one and brought it home. One end was already a bit dry so I pealed it a bit, and sure enough, it looked very loofah like in there.
I still wasn’t convinced that this was a real loofah. I just thought it was something similar that people used in the same way. I waited as it dried out the rest of the way.
Once it was dry I peeled off the skin, which was difficult since it came off in little chips. I’ve since learned it’s easier to peel before they get this dry.
Even after I had it completely peeled I still wasn’t convinced it was the same as the loofahs I had bought until I cut the ends off.
Sure enough, it was exactly like all the other loofahs I had bought in the past. Really cool I thought. The one thing different about this loofah was it had seeds inside.
I’ve collected a bunch of the seeds and when I get back to my house in Hawaii I’m going to grow loofahs. It’s really so cool to learn new things like this, new ways to grow your own, new ways, that are really old ways, to be sustainable and self sufficient.