Bitter melons originated in tropical India and have been cultivated for centuries throughout Asia.
The bitter melon is an annual that grows in tropical and subtropical areas. Reaching up to 30 feet in length, the plant grows as a vine with tendrils that attach to plants or other objects for support. Although highly popular as a food crop in India, China, and southeast Asia, bitter melons have been introduced only recently as a food item in U.S. markets. In this country, bitter melons are often grown on trellises and fences as decorative plants.
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