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Squash - Maybe? What is This?

 
gardener
Posts: 4323
Location: Missoula, MT US Hardy:5a Annual Precipitation: 15" Wind:4.2mph Temperature:18-87F
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I found this plant, while I was clearing an area above the old ponds that I am renovating, and I don't know what this is. I primarily just want to know if it's edible and if I can save the seeds from it.



What is this plant?
 
pollinator
Posts: 137
Location: Portland, OR
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We call it wild cucumber ( Echinocystis lobata). Apperently not the correct id, see Eric's post below.
Not edible. And don’t know of any other uses. I haven’t seen any animal to eat it either.

The flowers are very pretty, though.
 
pollinator
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Location: Bothell, WA - USA
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"Oregon manroot" is a wild cucumber with a perennial vine. The shocker is that it has a giant underground tuber that can be bigger than a basketball!

It has a lot of saponins in the root making it not so edible, but Native Americans used to grate it up and throw it in the water to temporarily stop fish from breathing for more convenient harvest at the surface.

I think you can harvest the seeds, but I haven't tried..

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marah_oreganus#Seeds_and_germination

 
master pollinator
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Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
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Try using it as soap. Saponins usually mean that it will be good for cleaning.

Edit. Went to the link and Wikipedia agrees. Juice that basketball and do some laundry.
 
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