Growing Squash, also Crookneck, Pattypan, Summer squash

Cucurbita pepo : Cucurbitaceae / the gourd family

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
      T T              
      P P              

(Best months for growing Squash in USA - Zone 5a regions)

  • S = Plant undercover in seed trays
  • T = Plant out (transplant) seedlings
  • P = Sow seed
  • Grow in seed trays, and plant out in 4-6 weeks. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 70°F and 95°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 24 - 31 inches apart
  • Harvest in 7-8 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Sweet corn
  • Mother Hubbard squash
  • Pattypan squash

Start in individual pots then transfer when all risk of frost is past. For succession, later plantings can be straight into the ground. Fast maturing squash varieties for summer growing. Not suitable to store like pumpkins. Usually grown to pick when young and used without removing rind or seeds.

Zucchini/courgette (see under Z) is also a variety of squash

Protect from frost. Water well. Grow on well mulched, raised area. Shelter from strong winds.

A spray with a 5 gm/teasp Bicarbonate of Soda in 600 ml/pint of water will help slow powdery mildew when it appears.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Squash

Use whole or sliced. Steam or fry.

Your comments and tips

27 Oct 08, Gabi (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
when should you cut yellow ruffle squash from the plant? We were told to cut them young and green and allow to yellow, but they have not yellowed as yet.
10 Nov 08, Elaine Boness (Australia - temperate climate)
I also would like to know when to harvest squash as this is the first time I've grown it. Do you harvest it the moment the flower dies off the end inlike comment before mine are yellow on plant
13 Jan 09, Orange Roughie (Australia - temperate climate)
There are a number of different types of squash ranging in mature colour from pale green to bright yellow. Pick when you feel your squash has stopped growing rapidly. Once the flower is pollinated you will see 2 weeks or so of rapid growth, after which it slows down somewhat. Experience of your own plant will tell you when is the best time to pick them, too big and they get 'floury' and too small and they are not ripe enough. Learn from your own plant, and let them grow.
09 Sep 09, Portia Walker (Australia - temperate climate)
I want to grow spaghetti vegetable, does anyone in Perth have any tips, ideas... seeds
21 Sep 09, Lyndall (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I am growing button squash. I have no idea when to pick them, they are only quite small but when the flower dies off, if i dont pick them they die. The only thing is i picked some the other day but they were still a little prickerly? The plants leaves also have some kind of mould would this be the reason why i only have very small squash, before it dies??
11 Nov 12, Kez (Australia - tropical climate)
If the squash die off after the flower closes/dies - this means the flower was not fertilised with pollen from a male flower. I would suggest you carefull pick a male flower (has a single, pointed centre) ensuring you don't shake it so much the pollen drops off, break off the petals surrounding it, & smear it in the crinkly looking centre of the female flowers. Plants can have male & female flowers on them. Re the mould - usually if badly effected the best thing is to pull it out & dispose of in bin. Maybe cutting some leaves off will help it to dry out & stop it spreading due to overcrowding. I have removed lots of leaves on my plants, so they put their efforts into growing the fruits rather than lots of big leaves.
23 Sep 09, Chris (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
Lyndall, your squash might not be getting properly pollinated. You could try pollination using a small paint brush or similar. A spray of dilute milk can help with the mildew on leaves.
04 Oct 09, Alison (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
We are growing button squash and eggplant for the first time. When growing squash do you need to pinch off the first few buds to encourage fruiting? Any other tips appreciated.
14 Jan 10, Steph (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi All, Very new at all of this! Planted squash seeds and they need to be replanted into the vegie patch now & wondering if anyone can tell me how far apart to plant them etc? Full sun? Anly help wld be appreciated :)
27 Jan 10, Jonathan (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi Steph, they need full sun, rich soil (dig in chicken pellets or other compost) and lots of space. I've got a couple of plants at the moment that were planted from seed around 10 weeks ago and the plants are around 5ft across. Less rich soils will probably produce a smaller plant. Keep them well watered and liquid fertilise at least once a week and you should have loads to go round! Pick when the fruit are around 5cm across.
Showing 1 - 10 of 69 comments

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