Ash gourdPalakkad: Ash gourd or white gourd is a common vegetable in Kerala. But a giant ash gourd that too weighing 16 kg is a rare sight.

It was grown in the yard of Jayaprakash from Vattanodu in Koottanadu. One of the seeds sown three months back bore such a big vegetable while other seeds had normal sized ash gourd.

Jayaprakash said that usually ash gourds of around 4 kg are grown here. No special care was take for this, he added.

A homemade fertilizer consisting of cow urine, cow dung, waste jiggery, cereal powder, and top soil is used for farming, Jayaprakash said.

Jayaprakash, an ex-NRI, uses his 80 cents of land to grow different types of vegetables including cucumber, tomato spinach and pumpkin. Variants of plantain and tapioca are also farmed here.

Normally the vegetables are sold at the organic vegetable market conducted by Thrithala panchayat. But the present ash gourd is demanded by a hotel owner, Jayaprakash said.