Ornamental gourds do not produce edible fruits, but instead they are used for craft and decoration projects. Gourds from the Langenaria family, such as bottle and dipper gourds, are generally cured and dried for later use. Mold can develop on the gourd surface since it heals, which results in mottling and stains some discover desirable for decorating purposes. If you would rather a gourd without mottling, or in case dark spots look, you can wash them away and create your dried gourds almost uniform in color.
Dilute 1 part chlorine bleach in 9 parts water. Wipe down the gourds with the bleach solution prior to curing to prevent some mold growth and reduce the chances of dark spots.
Cure the gourds in one layer in a dry, dark, cool place for approximately six months, or until the shells become hard and the seeds rattle inside. Turn the gourds once or twice per week all sides dry evenly.
Dip a rag to a solution of 1 part chlorine bleach and 9 parts water. Alternatively, use rubbing alcohol. Rub the outside of the dried gourd harshly together with the rag to remove any mold on the surface.
Scrub the washed gourd with fine steel wool or fine-grain seams until the dark spots come away. Wipe the gourd with a damp rag to remove the sanding residue.