Delicata squash hybrid?

kaktuskris(5)October 22, 2009

This year as an afterthought I planted some three year old Delicata squash seeds from a squash I had bought at the grocery store. The plants grew well and I got a pretty good harvest of this tasty squash. What was peculiar was that the squash on one of the plants were the same color as the regular Delicata, but a different shape, almost like acorn squash, but not quite. I am thinking maybe this is a hybrid, and that maybe the farm where the parent squash was growing had Delicata and maybe Acorn squash growing next to each other and they were cross-pollinated? Is this a plausible explanation? What do you think?


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Delicata will cross pollinate with any other C. pepo and that species includes acorns, most summer squash, many pumpkins etc. It is not uncommon for growers of Delicata, to also grow Sweet Dumpling and Acorns as they have similar requirements. If they are within a 1/4 mile or so, they will cross. You can get some interesting specimens from cross pollinated seeds.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2009 at 8:33PM
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spiced_ham(z5 OH)

I had the same thing happen from a Burpee Heirloom pack, and someone who grew fields of Delicata told me that there are always a few plants that put out these round ones. Because of the overall similarity to Delicata in these cases (size, color, stripes) I would not be surprised if there is something other than hybrid seed going on... possibly a gene (fruit elongation) that gets turned off easily. But if the size, color, and stripes genes are dominant and the elongate shape is recessive my hypothesis could very well be wrong. My oddball was different in some other ways too. It was disease resistant and HUGE.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2009 at 7:57PM
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Interesting. I am cooking the first of my different shaped Delicata today and will see if there is any difference in taste. Delicata in my opinion tastes better than any other squash I have tried.


    Bookmark   November 1, 2009 at 11:55AM
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spiced_ham(z5 OH)

My "mutants" were hard skinned, stringy and lacked flavor, but were full of seeds, which I roasted.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2009 at 8:16PM
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I have delicata grown from last year's seeds and they appear to be a cross. They are quite large and acorn-shaped. See the picture. I'll be saving the seeds since they are larger than the normal delicata. Haven't done a taste test though.


    Bookmark   August 15, 2012 at 6:09PM
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