Cucurbita foetidissima HBK. - Stinking Pumpkin

Cucurbita foetidissima plant

Family - Cucurbitaceae

Stems - No info yet.

Cucurbita foetidissima stem

Cucurbita foetidissima tendrilTendril.

Leaves - No info yet.

Cucurbita foetidissima leafAdaxial surface.

Cucurbita foetidissima leafAbaxial surface.

Cucurbita foetidissima leaf surfaceLeaf surface close-up.

Inflorescence - No info yet.

Flowers - No info yet.

Cucurbita foetidissima flower

Cucurbita foetidissima flowerFlower, side-view.

Cucurbita foetidissima fruitImmature fruit.

Cucurbita foetidissima mature fruitMature fruit.

Flowering - June - September.

Habitat - Railroad embankments, roadsides, fields, waste ground.

Origin - Native to U.S. and Mexico.

Other info. - This vining pumpkin species can be found in scattered counties throughout Missouri. The plant can be identified by its scabrous stems, harsh, ovate leaves, and globose fruits.
The species name "foetidissima" means "the most smelly." Barely crushing or disturbing any part of the plant emits the incredibly foul odor. This fruits contain saponin glycosides and will foam like soap when crushed in water.

Photographs taken at Tall Grass Prairie National Preserve, KS., 9-20-09.


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