Chayote is a member of the Sechium family. Its botanical name is Sechium edule.
Chayote is a tuberous rooted perennial that climbs. Vines can grow 40 feet (12 meters) or higher. Leaves are broadly triangulate, about 5-8 in (12-20 cm) long, with shallow lobes. The fruit is pale green and pear-shaped, about 6 in (15 cm) long. It hangs from the vines on thin stems.
The fruit is thick and fleshy, a little crisp, and contains a single large, soft-hulled seed which is eaten right along with the flesh. Each vine can produce 50 or more fruits per season.It is an edible vegetable and is treated mainly as a perennial, so it grows best over a period of time (3 years and greater). Normally grows with a viny habit. This plant tends to bloom in early summer, followed by first harvests in mid summer.
Chayote is normally quite a low maintenance plant and is normally very easy to grow - great for beginner gardeners!
This plant info is provided by the myfolia gardener's wiki. All details about Chayote have been kindly provided by our members.
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Chayote is a warm-season tender pereennial that requires 120 to 150 frost-free days to reach harvest. Grows as a vine and produces pale green to white flattened—ear-shaped fruit that tastes like a nutty-flavored squash. The vines can reach up to 50 feet long, leaves are hairy and resemble maple-leaves. Grow 1 chayote plant per household of 4 people. Takes full sun or partial shade and grows in loose, well-drained but moisture-retentive soil rich in organic matter.1Position in a full sun / partial sun location and remember to water moderately. Use Zone 8 - Zone 11 as your guideline for the appropriate climate for this plant. Chayote needs a soil ph of 6.0 to 6.8 (weakly acidic soil). Chayote is generally regarded as a tender plant, so remember to wait until your soil is warm and the night time temperature is well above freezing before moving outside.
See our list of companion Plants for Chayote to see which plants you should plant in close proximity to encourage growth.
Leave mature fruit indoors in a cool, dry place until it starts to form a shoot.
Plant shooting fruit at an angle with the shooting end pointing downwards and the top just at or slightly above soil level.Chayote is tender, so ensure you wait until all danger of frost has passed in your area before considering planting outside.
Pick the fruit when pale green and about 5cm (2inches) in length. Larger, older fruit have less flavour.
The centre of the choko fruit is a seed. This is the part that will shoot if the harvested fruit is kept indoors.
These problems, diseases and pests are known to affect Chayote plants:
At one time there was a rumor afloat in Australia that McDonald’s was making its apple pies from chayote rather than apples. It appears that this wasn’t the case—chayote were more expensive at the time than apples. McDonald’s responded by emphasizing that this pies were made from real Granny Smith apples.
Mirliton, Christophine, Chow-chow, Choko, Chocko, Chouchou, Cidra, Gayota, Vegetable pear, Squash