Growing Choko/Chayote, also Chayote squash, christophene, chouchou, mirliton

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15 Oct 23 dz (USA - Zone 10a climate)
my wife brought home a couple of Chayote that had started sprouting tiny roots out the bottom, so I researched and found that you can carefully split the fruit in half and retrieve the seed, you do not need to plant the entire fruit, but you must be very careful splitting the chayote because the seed is soft, not hard like an avocado or mango, and easily damaged when splitting the fruit. Then I planted them in small starter containers in the kitchen window, and after a few weeks when the shoots had gotten about 2 inches tall, I transplanted them outside into a 5-gallon bucket with a heavy-duty tomato cage as a trellis. A few weeks later one had been eaten by pests and died, but the other is growing and about 6 inches tall. I know this is the wrong timing for growing chayote, but since the seeds had already sprouted roots, I wanted to see what I could do with them. If the one remaining vine survives the winter here in Zone 10A, like my tomatoes and eggplants usually do, maybe it will flower and fruit next year. If a seed package or even a very reputable web site like Gardenate posts a recommended panting time, and your circumstances don't match that recommended timing, try it anyway, you never know what the results might be unless you try. I'll plant potatoes year-round whenever I have any potatoes sprouting slips. I may only get a few baby potatoes when panted "out of season", but it was either try to grow the sprouts or add them to the compost bin. I also grow garlic in Zone 10A even though it is recommended not to. They are smaller than if grown in better climates, but small garlic is better than no garlic, it still tastes great, just use two cloves instead of one.
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