Growing bitter gourds in pots

Growing bitter gourds in pots is an excellent option for those with limited space.

I love growing bitter gourds. Why??… because they are the easiest vegetable to grow. They do not demand much attention and are fuss free.  All that you have to do is use good soil, water them daily and keep them in a place where they will get plenty of sunlight….. and they are sure to reward you with good yield. Growing bitter gourds in pots is that easy.

growing bitter gourd

Steps to follow while growing bitter gourds in pots/ containers:

  • Take a medium sized pot with three or four holes at the bottom of the pot. The holes help in proper drainage of water. Place small stones on the holes. This is to prevent the slipping of soil through the holes.
  • Fill the pot with soil and compost in the ratio of 1 : 1.
  • Sow the seeds and cover the seeds with soil. In a medium sized pot, 2 seeds can be sown.
  • Sprinkle some water over the soil.
  • Water the seeds daily and in a week to 10 days, the seeds will germinate and will soon grow its initial leaves.
  • Water the plant daily. Don’t allow the soil to dry. The soil should be moist.
  • Bitter gourd plant is a climber. Hence, once the plant has grown about 5 to 6 inches long, it has to be provided with a support to climb on.
  • The plant produces beautiful yellow flowers. There are two types of flowers – male and female. The female flower has the fruit growing at the base of the flower. Male flowers fall off in a day or two.  Female flowers produce fruits.

  • You can harvest bitter gourd roughly around two and half months from sowing the seed.
  • Add organic compost to the plants every three weeks.

Note :

Bitter gourds are pollinated by insects and bees. But at certain times, the female flower dries off without forming fruits. At such times, we need to hand pollinate the flowers. Pick a male flower and transfer the pollens to the female flower by gently brushing the pollens against the stigma of the female flowers ensuring adequate transfer of pollens.  

How to Hand-pollinate bitter gourd flowers

Just by following these simple steps, you can grow organic karela (bitter gourds) in your own garden, in pots. Isn’t growing bitter gourds in pots easy? If you try growing karelas in your kitchen garden, do share your experience with me in the comments section.


Bitter gourd is said to have multiple health benefits. You can add it to your diet in the form of juice or sabzi.

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Happy Gardening!!


  1. Hello Vanita
    I have planted bitter gourd
    But they were not growing well I am able to figure out what the problem is and also male flowers are very less in number compare to females all my female flowers are dropping off because of lack of pollination and I can’t hand pollinate due to less male flowers

    • Hello Spandana

      Great to know that you are growing bitter gourd. Hope your plant is getting adequate sunlight and you are adding compost to your pot. Generally, the bitter gourd plant produces more of male flowers as compared to female flowers (flower which has a fruit growing at the base of the flower) and so hand pollination is never an issue. Please ensure that the plant is getting adequate sunlight and it is getting the required nutrients and your problem should be solved. Do not lose hope. Bitter gourd is one of the most easiest vegetables to grow.

      Happy Gardening!!


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