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Melon Loco Apodanthera undulata


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Melon Loco - habit and flower
© Walt Anderson

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Family: Cucurbitaceae, Cucumber view all from this family

Description A malodorous, grayish, hairy plant with long, coarse, prostrate stems bearing tendrils, kidney-shaped leaf blades, and yellow, funnel-shaped flowers.
Habit: native perennial vine or herb; sprawling, creeping vine.
Height: stems to 10 ft (3.3 m) long.
Leaf: edges toothed, lobed, or pinnately divided, densely hairy, contracting when water is scare.
Flower: large, floppy, yellow funnel, 5-lobed, 1.5 in (4 cm) long and wide.
Fruit: spherical or oval gourd, pale green, with woody rind and darker ribs; to 4 in (10 cm) long.

Warning Plants with the word loco ("crazy") in their common names are usually poisonous to some degree, and should not be ingested by humans or animals; several contain behavior-altering toxins.

Flower May to September.

Habitat Sand dunes, gravelly flats, grasslands, and roadsides.

Range Southern Arizona east to western Texas and south to Mexico.