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Coccinia grandis - (L.)J.Voigt.

Common Name Ivy Gourd
Family Cucurbitaceae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Deciduous bush, savannah, dry evergreen forest and thickets[200]. Moist neglected places, especially on hedges, to elevations of 1400 metres in Nepal[272].
Range Tropical Asia To Africa.
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Half Hardy Moist Soil Full sun
Coccinia grandis Ivy Gourd

Coccinia grandis Ivy Gourd


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Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Coccinia grandis is a PERENNIAL growing to 3 m (9ft 10in).
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 9. It is in flower from August to September. The species is dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required). and is pollinated by Insects. The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Bryonia acerifolia D.Dietr. Bryonia alceifolia Willd. Bryonia barbata Buch.-Ham. ex Cogn.

Plant Habitats

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; South Wall. By. West Wall. By.

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit  Leaves
Edible Uses:

Young leaves and long slender stem tops - cooked and eaten as a potherb or added to soups[46, 61, 105, 177, 183, 272]. Young and tender green fruits - raw in salads or cooked and added to curries etc[2, 46, 61, 105, 177, 183]. Ripe scarlet fruit - raw. Fleshy and sweet[183]. The fruit is up to 5cm long[200].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Hypoglycaemic  Laxative  Miscellany  Ophthalmic  Poultice  VD

The juice of the roots and leaves is considered to be a useful treatment for diabetes[240, 272]. The juice of the stem is dripped into the eyes to treat cataracts[272]. The leaves are used as a poultice in treating skin eruptions[240]. The plant is laxative[61]. It is used internally in the treatment of gonorrhoea[240]. Aqueous and ethanolic extracts of the plant have shown hypoglycaemic principles[240].

References   More on Medicinal Uses

The Bookshop: Edible Plant Books

Our Latest books on Perennial Plants For Food Forests and Permaculture Gardens in paperback or digital formats.

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Other Uses


None known

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Succeeds in any soil[1] but prefers a sunny sheltered position in a humus-rich open soil[164]. Keep the plant well watered in the growing season[164]. Occasionally cultivated for its edible fruit in tropical and sub-tropical zones[46, 61], this plant is not hardy in Britain and normally requires greenhouse protection if it is to fruit here[200]. However, it may succeed outdoors as a tender annual in hot summers if given a suitable position and started off early in the greenhouse. Dioecious, male and female plants must be grown if seed and fruits are required.

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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The PFAF Bookshop

Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Book titles include Edible Plants, Edible Perennials, Edible Trees,Edible Shrubs, Woodland Gardening, and Temperate Food Forest Plants. Our new book is Food Forest Plants For Hotter Conditions (Tropical and Sub-Tropical).

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Plant Propagation

Seed - sow March in a warm greenhouse in pots of fairly rich soil placing 2 - 3 seeds in each pot. The seed usually germinates within 2 - 4 weeks at 20°c[164]. Thin to the best seedling in each pot and grow them on fast, giving occasional liquid feeds. Plant out after the last expected frosts and give the plants some protection such as a cloche until they are growing away well.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

ivy gourd; kovai fruit; little gourd; scarlet gourd; tindora. Spanish: pepino cimarrón. Chinese: hong gua. Bangladesh: telakucha. Germany: Scharlachranke; Tindola. India: ban-kundri (Oriya); bimbika (Sanskrit); donda kaya (Telugu); kova (Malayalam); koval (Malayalam); kundree; kundru (Hindi); kunduru (Hindi); tindori; tondikay (Kannada); tondli (Marathi). Marshall Islands: kiuri awai. Micronesia, Federated states of: aipikohrd (Pohnpei). Pakistan: kanduri (Urdu); kundur (Urdu). Peninsular Malaysia: pepasan. Sweden: scharlakansgurka. Tonga: kiukamapa ae initia. Aroi papasan, Baby cucumber, Bak tam nin, Ban kakri, Bat, Belipoka, Bimbika, Bolu teke, Buta, Bwlai, Chiloda, Chum bat, Covay kai, Donda, Edaldalksin, Enkaiserariai, Gol kakri, Golenda, Jangli kundru, Kandaroi, Kanduri, Kapasan, Kattukoval, Kauwa-luli, Kiukamapa 'ae 'initia, Koba, Kovai, Kundri, Kundri ja, Kundru, Lacheta, Lyungulyungu, Marr 'had, Ndegegeya, Pak tam lung, Pake, Papasan, Pepasan, Phak tam leung, Phak tam nin, Phak tamlueng, Sarap alas, Scarlet fruited gourd, Scarlet gourd, Sloek Bas, Tala kachu, Tam ling, Tam lung, Tam nin, Tam-lueng, Tandli, Telakucha, Telkocha, Tilkakri, Tindora, Tinduri, Tondli, Tongli, Tudu.

Africa, Asia, Australia, Bangladesh, Barbados, Cambodia, Cameroon, Caribbean, Central Africa, Central African Republic, CAR, Chad, China, Colombia, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Cuba, East Africa, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gambia, Ghana, Guam, Guiana, Guinea, Guinée, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Hawaii, Himalayas, India, Indochina, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Kenya, Laos, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritius, Micronesia, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, North Africa, Northeastern India, Pacific, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, PNG, Philippines, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, SE Asia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South America, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad-Tobago, Uganda, USA, Vanuatu, Vietnam, West Africa, Yemen, Zambia.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

This plant can be weedy or invasive. Native to East Africa and introduced to Australia, the Caribbean, southern USA and the Pacific region. An aggressive grower smothering and killing native vegetation, including mature trees. Particularly invasive in Saipan and Guam. Known as a noxiuos weed in Hawaii, USA.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed.

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


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Botanical References


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Readers comment

D.LOGU   Mon Nov 7 2005

Dear sir, Thanks for your information. Best regards, D.LOGU

MORINGA PRODUCTS Exporters of moringa and herbal plants

   Mon Apr 10 2006

This is an aggressively invasive species that can smother everything in its path, and this should be mentioned under your "Known Hazards" section for this species.

Coccinia grandis (PIER species info) This page highlights species information RE: Coccinia grandis from the Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk project (PIER)

Thiruvelan   Sun Jan 10 2010

Diabetes natural | Coccinia cordifolia | Ivy gourd Natural Diabetes herbals such as; Ivy gourd, herbal combination Chandraprabha and Gokshur are believed to control glucose level and nourishes pancreas, liver, kidney, heart & eye.

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