Grow Your Favorite
Types of Winter Squash

I started growing different types of winter squash after I moved to our new home with more garden space.

I can’t believe what I was missing.

The winter squash available in the market in my area is acorn, butternut and spaghetti squash.

Not a very large variety and the cost ranged from .69 cents to 1.49 a pound.

The farmers markets offer a wider variety, but the cost can range from 2.00 to 5.00 per squash.

Growing your own can be rewarding and provides a chance to try new types not available in the markets.

Winter squash is available year round but are at their best in the late fall through January.

Winter squash nutrition; a half cup (205 gm) of cooked squash contains the following:

    76 Calories
    Vitamin A 10708 units
    Vitamin B1 .040 mg
    Vitamin B2 .055 mg
    Vitamin C 19.7 mg
    Phosphorus 15 mg
    Calcium 45 mg
    Iron .9 mg
    Protien 1.8 gm

Winter squash grows on vines that spread 6 to 12 feet across the garden. This limits the amount you can grow.

To save space winter squash can be grown vertically on fences and supports. I choose 4 different types of winter squash to grow in 2011.

I grew the squash vertically on wire fencing placed 4 feet apart which allowed me to grow them in 16 by 20 feet of garden space.

Types of Winter Squash

Gray Hopi Squash is an old heirloom variety that grows 5 to 10 pound fruits with light gray skin.

The inside is yellow orange flesh similar to pumpkin. This squash was slow to germinate; the spring of 2011 was cooler than normal. Once it came up it grew well.

Stores well in cool place 3 to 5 months. 100 days to maturity.

Kabosha Squash is Japanese winter squash that comes in different colors ranging from orange to green.

We first found this squash at the local farmers market in October and bought a couple.

It was sweet and buttery deep orange flesh that has become one of our favorite varieties.

The squash grows 2 to 5 pound fruits. Good winter storage 3 to 4 months in cool place.90 days to maturity.

Sweetmeat Squash was a total surprise. We bought this one from a gardener selling along side the road.

It cost us .75 cents. The inside is thick and dense, deep orange with a smooth sweet flavor. This has become my son’s favorite.

The squash grows to 6 to 10 pounds. Winter storage up to 6 months if keep in a cool place. 115 days to maturity.

Acorn Squash is small with ridges. The colors range from green, orange and brown.

The flesh is yellow and mild and sweet. Great cut in half and baked with butter.

Nice size fruit grows to 2 to 4 pounds. 80 days to maturity.

Jarrahdale Pumpkin is from the town of Jarrahdale in New Zealand.

We bought this at the farmers market and were surprised by the rich flavor and smooth texture.

It has deep ridges and blue gray color. The inside has nice orange flesh. 100 days to maturity.

New England Sugar Pie Pumpkin bears small 4 to 5 pound fruit. This pumpkin was the first to germinate and grew quickly.

This is a good pie pumpkin and grows lots of fruit.

Stores well 3-5 months if keep in cool cellar. 100 days to maturity.

Red Kuri Squash is another Japanese winter squash with small teardrop shaped fruit that grows 3 to 7 pounds.

This variety grew as well as the New England pumpkins.

It has a nice rich flavor, orange dry flesh. Stores Well in cool dry place. 92 days to maturity.

Cooking With All Types of Winter Squash

Baking is the easiest cooking method for winter squash. Cut Squash in half and scrap out the seeds. Seeds can be saved for roasting.

Wrap squash in foil and bake on cookie sheet at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes to an hour. Check often. When you can insert knife in easily, it is done.

Serve as a side dish or cool to touch and scrape meat out of shell and mash. Season with butter and serve.

Peel squash and cut into cubes. Boil in salted water until tender, about 20 minutes. Cooked squash can be frozen for longer storage.

Raw squash cubes can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Use squash in soups, casseroles and pies in place of sweet potatoes and pumpkin.

Storing Different Types of Winter Squash

Pick squash with about 2 inches of stem attached. Clean off dirt and inspect for damage. Eat damaged squash first.

Winter squash will store for several months in a dark cool place between 50 and 65 degrees F. Check squash often and cook squash before they start to spoil.

Squash can be cooked up and placed in bags and frozen for up to 6 months. We are always sad when we eat our last squash of the season.

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