planting winter squash

kasha77October 22, 2009

Hi- I'm new to this forum- I know I know I'm too late to plant my squash seeds this year- so when do I sow them next year? I have some great Acorn Squash seeds- I'v heard that we're not supposed to plant them in the spring- but as a mid season crop- any info will be greatly appreciated!

Thanks!

Kasha77

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tsmith2579(7B)

Winter squash are not grown or planted in temperate climates during the winter. Butternut, acorn and other squashes get the name winter squash because they store well for winter use. Plant them when the ground and the days are warm. Pick them in the fall and store them in a cool, dark basement. You will have winter squashes well into the New Year. Contact your Cooperative Extnsion Services at your stat's ag school. Here is a link.

Here is a link that might be useful: CES Agents

    Bookmark   October 24, 2009 at 12:37AM
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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

I do not believe that your info, Kasha, on waiting until mid summer to plant is correct. Once the summer solstice (June 21) passes, the days begin to shorten and plant growth begins to slow, growing slower and slower as time passes. Most winter squash need 90 to 100 days to mature. Typically, squash are planted as soon as the night temps are above 55 degrees and the ground has warmed. (Place your bare hand on the ground for a minute or so. Is it cold? The ground's not ready. Not very scientific, but it works.) For me, in central Mississippi, this is between March 1 and 15th.

You need to know that winter squash are mighty challenging in the deep south, especially if you are an organic gardener. Our insects are awful, (and they get worse later in the season), most especially, squash vine borers. Keeping them off your vines for as long as it takes for fruit to mature is extremely difficult. I cannot give you a satisfactory answer on how to do that (organically). Maybe others can.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2009 at 3:26PM
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kasha77

Hi again-
That's why squash is SO expensive! You both were very knowledgeable & extremely helpful! Thanks so much- I will try them in the spring when the earth warms-
kasha77

    Bookmark   October 25, 2009 at 8:59AM
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mulberryknob

Kasha, Macmex on the oklahoma forum is very knowledgeable about winter squash. There are some great discussions on that forum, with photos, concerning borer risistant varieties and sources.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2009 at 6:53PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

Moschata varieties are squash vine borer resistant and easy to grow. Butternut is probably the most well known but there are many other types. I've tried quite a few types from around the world and I will have to say that their taste is very dependant on weather and water. Butternut has been the most prolific (especially in dry weather), disease resistant and tastes the best in any weather. Delicious and makes excellent pies and squash butters. I baked a bunch tonight to begin canning and freezing it all!

    Bookmark   November 8, 2009 at 12:25AM
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