by Luis Garcia

all images need sources!

Gourd 2.pngGourds, which are also known as Calabash is in the family of plants called the Cucurbitaceae and is the same family as the pumpkin. Gourds is occasionally used to describe crops like pumpkin, cucumbers, squash, melons, etc. but the term gourd more specifically refers to the plants of the two Cucurbitaceae genera Lagenaria and Cucurbita, or to the plants hollow, dried-out shell.

Origin, Dispersal, and Domestication

need a map here Gourd exist all over the world, the ones, which are native to Africa, are called bottleneck gourds. The gourd was domesticated in Africa some 4,000 years ago.  Bottle gourds were one of the first domesticated plants and the only that spread across the world before Columbus sailed to America. Even though its native to Africa, bottle gourds was being used by humans in Asia 11,000 years ago and in the Americas about 10,000 years ago. The bottleneck gourd dispersal is an unresolved issue but could have possibly spread from Africa to Asia, America, and Europe through the early travel of Paleoindians carrying domesticated gourds when going to colonize the new world Or that the gourds hard shell could have allowed it to simply float across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas.

Social Significance

Gourd 1.pngGourds are used in Uganda for many reasons. They use them as containers for food or drinks. When halved they can be used as drinking bowls. Long necked gourds can be used for collecting water or keeping salt or cow butter. Gourds play a big role in the Ugandan society they have many practical uses that help people in their day-to-day lives.

Cultural Significance

Gourd Trumpets.pngGourds do not just have utilitarian qualities but are a major part of Ugandan culture. Gourds can be used to make musical instruments, which are used by the people in the Uganda of the Basoga kingdom in royal celebrations. The type of music and dance is called the Bigwala and it is a cultural practice of the Basoga people that is coronations and funerals, and in recent times for social occasions. Bigwala consist of 5 or more monotone grand trumpets blown t to produce a melody, which is accompanied by a specific dance. This type of cultural practice is in threat of extinction Youtube video would be great here

Needs a LOT more information here

Youtube instriuctions on how to grow and/or preserve gourds for example

Gourd Identification Chart.png

External sources

links to other sources here


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