Creeping Cucumber
Melothria pendula (L.)
Cucurbitaceae (Cucumber) Family

      

The plant is a fragile, inconspicuous climbing vine with small greenish-yellow flowers. Its preferred habitat is borders of marshes, sandy roadsides, and low woods. Distribution is throughout the Escambia region. Creeping Cucumber is also known as Guadeloupe Cucumber and by the scientific names Melothria nigra, Melothria nashii, Melothria microcarpa, Melothria guadalupensis, Melothria fluminensis, Melothria fluminensis, and Melothria edulis.

The leaves are alternate on the vine, 2.75 inches in length and about equally as broad, but may be quite variable in size and color. Each leaf is toothed and shallowly or deeply 5-lobed.

The flowers are yellow, have 4 to 5 regular parts and about 0.3 inch wide. Blooms first appear in late spring and continue into early fall (may bloom throughout the year in this region). The 4 to 5 petals are fused to funnel-like and attached to the tip of the fruit. The flowers are bisexual in nature and symmetrical in form. The sepals number 4 to 5 and are shorter than the petals.

Fruit is a pendulous tiny watermelon-like berry about 0.4 inch long. The color is green to black with white seeds. Other names are: Guadeloupe Cucumber and Squirting Cucumber

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