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inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Posted by lroberge 5 (My Page) on
Thu, Aug 10, 06 at 22:08

Greetings! I am growing butternut squash (first time).

I have about 8 or 9 at present on various vines.

One question: when do I pick them? What do they look like?
What is the color that distinguishes them as ripe and ready to pick? Can they get "overripe"?

I would appreciate any input here.

Thank you.

Lawrence


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

When the stems turn tan color and look dried a bit is when they get picked. They shouldn't ever get overripe, as once they do, they start to spoil quickly


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

they're a storage squash, I've always waited and picked after the first frost. it's fine to store them out in the garden till harvest. I've never had one overripe.

I've always picked after frost, left ouside, turning 1/4 turn every day for about a week. then put them in the basement for long term storage.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I pick mine when they are a tan color with no green lines running through them. If they have a lot of green you have to peel way down a lot to the flesh. They will keep a few months if kept in a cool dry place.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I wait till first frost too.
If you give them a quick dip (or wipe) in a bleach/water solution, it will kill any bacteria on the outside and help them store longer.
Doesn't take much bleach! Maybe a tablespoon or two in a gallon or so of water. I don't measure, just a couple "glugs" from the bottle.
Deanna


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

With all squash, I wait until the stem is tan and cracking. I know that a lot of people wait until the first frost, however if that first frost turns out to be a harder frost than you expected, it can damage the fruit. Our family lives on the stuff, so we grow a couple hundred lbs every summer of various kinds.

I have begun storing squash in a light, dry room on plastic shelving with newspaper or cardboard underneath. I use our greenhouse. They lasted all winter and the dozen or so that remained only began to go off in early May when the greenhouse started to seriously heat up from the sun. What were left I cut in half, seed-scooped, and baked for an hour at 350, and the half squash frozen in a plastic bag. It was easy to take one out, thaw it, scoop it out, and snarf.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I checked the garden log from last year

pick when the stems have turned brown and vines have died off. cut leaving 1-2 inches of stem.

leave outdoors to cure as prev mentiond.

use a 10:1 water to bleach solution to wash off the squash before storing to kill bacteria.

careful not to bump or damage as fruit famage shortens storage life.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I am so glad this question was posted! We grew them for the first time this year also and were wondering the same thing. Thanks for posting this!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I have a great recipe for butternut squash soup that I made up. It is yummy and cheaper than the $3 box Campbell's is selling their's for. Respond here and I'll send it to you. Enjoy!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Please post Eileen!
I would love to have the soup recipe!
Deanna


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Ok, I have to chime in here... Last year was my first year growing butternuts. I left them out until a frost nipped them, and wasn't happy I did... The places where they had gotten a little frost were the fastest to rot once they were stored. I vote with Diane here -- I will pick when they are fully tan / no green stripes left...

Emily


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

To help reduce spoilage of squash after harvesting. A dip into a weak solution of water and chlorine beach will help. The chlorine will kill off any surface fungus or mold, so they will not spoil as quickly. Also, even though squash it quite hard, they can bruise easily, so use care when handling them. I preference is buttercup, or some of the similar strains. They seem to have a sweeter richer flavor.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

So... I got a late start and we got an early frost and my squash isn't ripe, they all got faint lines on them still and we just had a freak frost last night (I didn't cover them - suppose I should have) now as the ground thaws it looks like the leaves will be dropping off the vine.

Is there anything I can do to get the fruits to further mature? Is it possible the vine is still alive? We won't have another frost for a couple weeks.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

If there was a frost and leaves are dying, no, it will not continue to grow. Most all plants need healthy leaves to give the strength to their fruits. Without leaves, the fruits will quickly die. The squash should not be left out in a frost as it will also perish quickly. They can harden a little indoors, but use the method I mentioned to reduce/prevent fungal damages. Try covering the plants with a heavy weight plastic frost barrier plastic. Because leaves have been frost bitten, they will not return and more will soon die too.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

No no...

We had a FREAK frost, we will not have another one for 3 weeks or so, and many leaves have been killed, but not all.

So the vines are still alive, just without most of their leaves, meanwhile the squash are large, but unripe.

I can leave the squash outside for another 3 weeks without risk of frost, so worrying about future frost isn't the issue.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Eileen4flowers, I would love your soup recipe too! I grew butternuts for the first time this year. Still a few on the vine, if the bugs don't get them. . .


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I'm not worried about frost.... only gophers, who eat the squashes from the ground up, unseen. I just raised the last few big ones up off the ground with some "pot feet" in hopes of deterring the gopher. It would be nice if the last would get ripe before the vines die of old age.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Here it was a big huge woodchuck that feasted on my very special butter squash and the vines. Also got all my sweet potatoes. It was war and I had to get a Conabear trap to get that rodent. Spent a small fortune on the traps, lures and even scent marker. It finally took the bait. The trap can snap a mans arm in two, and requires 60 pounds of pull on each of the two springs. No other varment since then will cross my garden and get away with destroying it.

My watermelon vines died out just about the same time as the melons were ripe enough. For watermelons, you look at the tendril opposite the melon stem if its brown, the melon is ripe. If I hadn't started the melons indoors early May, there would have been very few ready.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I never heard of them getting over-ripe. I pick mine when I see the vine where it attaches is no longer green. I keep them in a cool dry place until baked. They last for months.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Would love the soup recipe!

Thanks!
diana


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

The dip into a weak water and bleach solution can prevent early spoliage. As mentioned before, squash, even though quite hard, can get bruised. Once it happens, it will travel into the flesh.

There are granular products used to deter moles and gophers. I lost many crocus bulbs and added an abrasive pelletized product underneath the bulbs. Castor bean oil has also been used to ge rid of them, but it just chases them away. If you find an open burrow, add smoke bombs to the holes and quickly cover them kill the rodents. Voles also destroy roots and other tubers.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I am so glad, Iroberge, you asked this question. I have never raised winter squash because I didn't know what to do or when. Also, didn't know about the bleach water.

Thanks for asking and thank everyone for responding.

My Grandmother used to punch a hole in the mole runs and drop a few castor beans in. She also dug down into the gopher hole and dropped some.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Castor is fine to chase them away, but a smoke bomb dropped into the holes will usually do them in. Once they get asphyxiated from the poison smoke, they are already in the right place for their death.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Here's how I make squash soup: Cook a winter squash and scrape out the insides (seeds can be discarded or used elsewhere). In a souppot, saute a chopped onion and a couple cloves of garlic. Add a can of chicken broth and a chopped up apple (peeled and cored). Add the squash. Cook until all is tender (5-10 minutes). Then run the soup through a blender (in batches). Put back in the souppot, add milk to the consistency you like and heat back up. It's delicious.


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What does butternut squash look like

I had bought some butternut squash plants from an old farmer. Now that they are producing I am not so sure they are butternut squash. They are round and have green stripes on them. Not at all a "nut" shape like you would think. Does this happen later on or did I get watermelon or some other variety of butternut I am not aware of. Thank you.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

BUTTERCUP???


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Yes, that variety sounds like Buttercup, as opposed to Butternut.

They are actually two very different varieties of winter squash, and don't look at all alike, although the name would insinuate that they would :)


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Is it still too late for that recipe??? Thanks!!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Butternut are not 'nut' shaped, although some buttercup are shaped like acorns with their crown attached.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Yikes! Looks like I picked mine way too early as they had stopped getting any bigger and some were brown. So I picked those. It seems though, that since the stems were still green that was not the best thing to do (it's ok I have a lot coming up!) But what to do with the ones I picked? Some are light green but had hail damage so I picked those too so the bugs wouldn't get them. Any ideas?


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Once picked the squash will not ripen further. Always pick when stems are tan and dry. If they are sitting on the ground, place them on a piece of wood or some heavy fabric mulch which will help reduce insect damages.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

The round green striped mystery squash sounds like it could also maybe be a delicata? Especially if she thinks it looks like a little watermelon...

Here are pictures of both.
Buttercup

Delicata


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Buttercup usually has a lighter rounded area of ligher green color at the opposite end to the stem. This area is bulging out a little too. Kobacha is similar and looks like what you have in the photo


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Another soup recipe: Peel and cut up. Roast in oven with chopped onions and other veggies as you like (yellow squash for me) for at least 30 minutes, stiffing often. Then cook in stock pot with chicken or veggie stock for about 45 minutes or so. I don't have a blender so I mash with potato masher pretty thoroughly - I like the texture better. Add some cinnamon and a bit of brown sugar and stir. When serving top with sour cream. mmmm.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Thanks for all the good info since I was concerned when to pick. I've got loads of squash this year that evidently grew from seeds tossed in my compost heap.
I'm going to try that soup Becky posted about also.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Hello! So happy to have found this site! I have been an avid flower gardener for years and this year we decided to try our hand at (organic) vegetables for the first time. So of course we planted 4 plants (from organic seed) of our favorite vegetable, Butternut squash. The plants have put out 23 tan beauties so far, and would have more but were attacked by powdery mildew before I knew what was happening. I sprayed them with Neem oil solution twice over the last two weeks and even though the vines and leaves look pretty beat up, we noticed a couple of days ago that we are not only getting new leaves, but also several new butternuts! I'm so stoked! Thanks to this site, I know that even though my older gems have turned tan, the attached stems are still green, so I need to wait before picking. Can someone please advise the best way to "cure" the butternuts when they are finally ready to pick? We live in a very hot, dry community in inland San Diego County, where temps go into the 100's fairly often. I have read that the butternuts, like pumpkins, should be placed in the sun for a week or two to harden after picking, but I have also read other people advise that they should be cured off the ground and even indoors. Also, do you think it's too late to plant more seeds? How long do Butternuts usually take from seedlings to harvest? These are over three months old right now, I can't imagine them going 'til late September. Any advice will be greatly appreciated. Also, I look forward to trying both of the Butternut Soup recipes that were so graciously shared here. Thanks!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I suggest not using grass clippings under your squash. When it rains- clippings get too wet & hold the moisture too long. Also, they can heat up the soil too much. Straw is better- shake the straw flake- don't just put the entire, intact flake down. Wheat straw works better than oat straw. We use straw but also will place small tree sticks, crossed, under squash & cantelopes to help avoid rotting & insects and promote better air circulation. We don't plant massive #s of squash so this is do-able for us.
We have had inordinate amts of rain this season- frequently raining in day then again overnight with daytime intense humidity and heat so its been a challenging year in the garden.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

  • Posted by wyllz Southern Calif. (My Page) on
    Sat, Jul 31, 10 at 21:41

Kassie2: my garden is inland from Riverside, CA and it gets hot and dry here like you. I've been growing Butternut squash for a few years now also pink banana squash. I've tried Kabocha, buttercup and delicosa but they don't seem to like the climate and/or soil. You mention several squash per vine which has not been my experience, usually 1 or 2 per vine. You mention mildew which I have never had and seems odd in hot dry climate. How are you watering your plants and what time of day? All of mine are on dripper systems which run early in the morning. Butternut squash take 85 - 98 days to "fully mature". I usually wait until the green stripes are gone and the vine turns a little brown. After I pick them I wipe them off with a damp cloth and inspect for any dings, dents and bad spots. I then set them in front of my fireplace on the stonework. It has an autumn harvest sort of look. Any little dings in the skin I turn up open to the air and they usually dry and harden quickly. Extra ones I keep in a cool dry area in the back room. I think that because our climate is so dry that we don't need to follow all of the advice from others from more humid areas. Also I plant into mid August since our growing season lasts until mid November (first frost). I save my own seeds and don't mind experimenting when and where I plant. This year I planted a bunch of seeds under my fruit trees and I also tried "Indian three sisters" planting (corn, pole beans, squash) which seems to be working well. One last thought, I plant more than I need and take the extra squash, after family, friends and neighbors, to the local food bank. PS. Try your squash in "African peanut stew". There are numerous recipes on the internet. My wife uses the version with sweet potato, squash and ginger. She grinds up roasted peanuts instead of peanut butter. It is a vegetarian recipe we serve over a bed of rice. We make a big batch and eat it for several meals. It is so good you want to lick the plate!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I am so glad I found this post. I, too, am growing butternut squash, gourds, and miniature melons for the first time up here in the north. My butternuts are well over 8" long, but the stems are still green, and there are more coming each day. Don't know what I'll do with those that won't make it (our first Frost Date is Sept. 16). I have had to 'bag' all those that survived because I have squirrels, ground hogs, a skunk, which visit and take their fill. I use paper bags so the fruit can breathe, but the down side is replacing them each time it rains. There are only two melons (the critters have also been after them), and there are several gourds (also bagged) but the vines are suffering from powdery mildew. I don't treat anything in the gardens and I have enough gourds anyway, so I guess winter will take care of it. Thanks for the recipes, nothing like a good soup in the fall.


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what to do if you pick your butternut (or any) squash too early:

Here's what you can do, if you realize you didn't give your butternuts enough time to ripen...

1) Put paper towel down on your window sill.

2) Place your squash "stem up" so they sit nicely and can get enough sun.

3) Take additional paper towel (about 1 piece for every stem you have), wet it, and wrap it around the cut-off stem. Try to do this as soon as possible after cutting your squash off the vine. Also make sure most of the paper towel is where the stem is cut off.

4) To make sure it stays damp, take a piece of foil (I used pieces about 3-4" squared) and gently place it on top of the paper towel that is covering the stem of the butternut...making sure to pinch it tightly around the part of the stem that is closest to the fruit (so the foil should resemble the shape of a light bulb). Make sure the foil completely covers the paper towel.

5) Repeat every day, for about a week (or less if your stems happen to get mushy, mine didn't), to ensure they're getting enough water to keep them ripening.

TAH DAAAAAAAAAAH! Brilliance at it's best.

Thank you.
(I made this up, but it completely works!)


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Hello to all. Thank you to Lawrence for asking the question. Thank you to all who have contributed. Thank you to Becky for the soup recipe. I will be making it this fall. This is my first visit here and I am already registered. I can't believe how great this site will be to assist me in my gardening experiences. I've been gardening for about 25 years or so but only now am branching out to canning and storing what I plant. I love it all. Regards to you all.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

  • Posted by elizh z5/6 MA (My Page) on
    Sat, Aug 28, 10 at 23:38

thanks very much to voodoodaul! I had a Long Island Cheese squash break off the vine today, well before I expected it to be ripe. I will try the moistening method to see if it will ripen more. (L.I. Cheese are significantly larger than butternuts, but closely related with tan color.) My other idea was to subject them to bananas, which works with some crops but not others. I'll try to report back...


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

  • Posted by elizh z5/6 MA (My Page) on
    Sun, Aug 29, 10 at 11:46

My LI Cheese may be too green to go anywhere, but ethylene gas (produced by apples and bananas, among others) should help....

Here is a link that might be useful: an ag extension harvest guide


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I have successfully used ziplock bags to protect growing squash from predation by varmints. [I use ziplocks for everything!]

One problem with straw or mulch around squash is that it can provide cover for squash bugs.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I haven't checked back here in a while and am delighted to see even more posts regarding the best way to grow, treat, harden, store and cook butternut squash! Thank you, wyllz, for responding to my post. It's very helpful since we live in the same type of climate. I don't know why these butternuts are doing so well--- we are actually in our third growth cycle with our original plants. We have 6 plants of butternut. Even now, the plants are producing tiny green butternuts as I harvest the ripened ones. Yes, I did start harvesting about two weeks ago, when the first tan beauty split open on the vine. Three more have since split. I cooked them all except the last one, which I am watching to see what happens since another site said that the squash will frequently heal itself if left on the vine. The splitting started when the weather suddenly became very hot and also I had a few days where I watered later in the day, around 3pm, and I don't think the plants liked it. I try to water before 7am daily, which I've done from the beginning. We have very clay soil, which I amended with E.B. Stone Organics Planting Compost(found at Armstrong Nursery---my favorite store!)and fed twice with E.B. Stone Organics Tomato and Vegetable Food. I have sprayed four times with Gardener's Choice 3-in-1 Spray for Organic Gardens (it's Neem Oil, and I can only find this product at Armstrong's, as well). My daughter commented that the Butternuts in particular seem to respond very positively to the Neem Oil!I've talked to other gardeners I know who live further near the coast, and they are having bad luck with zucchini and cantaloupe but have tomatoes coming out of their ears. My experience is exactly the opposite. Only my cherry tomatoes are giving me consistant quality. The rest of the tomato plants are a waste of water! However, the zucchini and cantaloupe are giving me pure joy, they are doing exceptionally well! And I only planted one plant of each! Thanks for sharing the tip regarding your wife's recipe for the buttenuts. It sounds delicious and makes my mouth water just reading about it. I'm always looking for yummy vegetarian recipes to balance my family of carnivore's diets! Also, how have you fared with the "3 sisters"? I definitely want to try planting them together next year!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Thanks for the info. I Live in CLT, NC, and grew butternut for the first time. I am getting ready to harvest, but what do I do with the vines? Do I leave them to die in the Winter, and do they come back next Spring? If they wont come back, can I pull them and replant new ones next year? Thanks!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Hi Mikealialex, Normally I compost the vines. Some may just bag up and set out for the trash with fears of powdery mildew.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Hello,
We had our first frost this morning and I still had 9 butternuts on the vines out there. I knew I should have picked the last of them sooner but wanted them to ripen up as much as possible. A few definitely froze slightly and I am wondering if they can still be safely stored for a while or do they have to be cooked up immediately or do they need to be tossed? I don't want anyone to get sick. If I save them for a few days before I can make soup with them, how will I know if they have gone bad? Please help with any advice. Thank you!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

  • Posted by malna NJ 5/6 (My Page) on
    Thu, Nov 25, 10 at 15:42

Kassie2,
Your frost-nipped butternuts won't store well whole, but they're still safe to eat. I'd cook them up pretty quickly, mash the pulp and freeze it (or make soup). They will probably last a few days until you can do something with them.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I'm a market gardener that grows lots of winter squash. How I tell if a winter squash is ready, is the fingernail test. If your fingernail will puncture the skin, it's not ready. Wait til the skin is tough enough that you fingernail can't puncture the skin, then go ahead and pick it. You do not need to wait til frost, I've had some that ripened as early as August. the early ripening ones don't keep as well. To keep winter squash, find a cooler, darkish area that is not moist. Place on shelve or rack, and visit the squash weekly, basically to inspect and turn each individual squash. If any have spots of discoloration, use those squash that week, the others can wait. I've kept a butternut squash for over 2 years without it going bad. Of course, the longer the squash is off of the vine, the tougher the skin gets and harder it is to cut. If you have a very tough skinned squash, boil the whole thing til the skin softens some, then cut it.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Hello,
I still have over 15 squash left that are in storage. They all look pretty good, but tonight I cut open two to bake and one had rather dark seeds and the other one had seeds that had actually sprouted! Otherwise, both looked and smelled fine. I'm taking a chance here and we are going to go ahead and eat them but I must admit that I am concerned the squash are going bad. Does anyone know how to tell? Thanks so much!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I wouls eat them soon.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Thanks for all the info. This is our first year to grow butternut squash and we definitely needed input on when to pick and how to cook. I liked the way the recipes sounded, but one called for "stiffing often". I need to know what stiffing is? Does it mean to stir or poke a fork through or????? Thanks....


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

is it too late to plant these in the ground from seeds in houston? zone 9


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Do you pick spaghetti squash the same way as butternut?


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Eeeks!! I think we picked our squash too soon. Hubby wanted to take them up, we had two that actually matured but the plants are growing out of control. What to do???? I didn't even realize until reading all these posts that because they are so similar to pumpkin with a hard skin, they should be stored in a cool spot and not in the frig. Should I take them out and what to do with them now. Should I cook immediately. Guess I should have read up on them before harvesting. Looks like we should have a few more so I will make sure not to harvest those too soon. I guess they should be able to go until September. The plant is growing like a beanstalk. Not sure how to control. WE have our garden area fenced in to protect against the animals/rodents and the plant is growing outside of the gate. It has also started creeping up the outside of the fence. I didn't know they grow so fast and vigorous. The leaves are gorgeous. Any suggestions would be helpful, this was our first time planting. Thanks for all the tips and will definitely try the soup recipe. Butternut squash is nice.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

It would appear that stiffing is a short fingered rendition of stirring.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Great info about butternut squash.

I like to save veggies by cutting up, blanching and freezing. Maybe this will save someone some grief if their squash will spoil soon.

Butternut Squash soup recipe
chopped and simmered squash with liquid, sweet or savory curry powder, a generous handful of nuts, like walnuts: if sweet curry powder add maple syrup or honey; if savory, add salt and pepper - blend, yum. Proportions to taste.
Can also sautee onions and add afterwards.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

My husband makes a WONDERFUL butternut squash soup that is like eating dessert (not the savory variety). He toasts a handful of pecans on a cookie sheet in the oven at about 275 degrees for 5 or 10 minutes and throws those in the blender with the cooked squash, some liquid (we like rice milk, but water or regular milk works fine too), add a pinch or two of salt AND the secret ingredient, real maple syrup to taste! Play around with the quantities...more pecans if you like 'em...liquid to desired consistency...you know the drill! Some homemade biscuits on the side make this a fabulous fall meal.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

wow, thanks for all the information on Butternut squash. I have a plant/vine that has taken over the community garden!!


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I just picked the first of my butternut squash. It was the largest and oldest of the 15 that I got. All of the squash have the tan skin but they all have a couple of faint green lines at the top near the stem. Does this mean they are not ready to be picked? The vines have all but died back except for a few and it doesn't look like the squash are getting any larger or darker. In fact, the latest two are very small and have been that way for two weeks. Should I go ahead and pick all of them or leave them a little longer?


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Leave them until the stem is fully dried up and there is no hint of green. They will keep much longer.

Dave


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I brought in 75 squash after the 1st frost(27 degrees F)stored them in my basement at 50-55 and 2 weeks later I had mold on every one of them. Can anyone tell me what happened?


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Did you wipe them down well with a disinfectant solution? Normally, if they are dry and hard enough to pick and store, wiping them down well with a mild bleach solution (1 part bleach to 10 parts water) is all that is needed to store them for months. If the shells have not hardened and the stems are not well dried then they won't store for long no matter what you do. Can or freeze those.

Dave


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I really appreciate all I've read on here, as to when our HUGE butternut squash yield will be ready to pick. Thank you all!

I have a question. In all those vines, we have found one GREEN squash on the same vine with the tan butternuts. What IS it? I know it has to be a butternut, but what type? It was really weird to find that on there.

The butternuts have taken over our garden space this year, and they are all big...not small like last year.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

  • Posted by malna NJ 5/6 (My Page) on
    Sun, Aug 19, 12 at 19:57

I have one butternut that started off really dark green, unlike all the others that are more a pale yellow-green.

Have no idea why, but it's getting tan like the rest of them, so it's a bit more normal looking now. We'll see how it tastes.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Typical Whalthan butternuts start off green with stripes, so it may be normal still.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick winter squash and what to do with the ni

  • Posted by Lesuko 5, Boulder CO (My Page) on
    Thu, Sep 27, 12 at 16:30

We have an excellent winter squash harvest. I'm reading conflicting recommendations on when to pick. some are huge basketball sized (kabocha) and fingernail hard. We haven't had our first frost but should I pick the large ones so they stop growing for fear they will be all seeds?

I have several that have been nibbled on by squirrels. The small holes have either grown over/closed or are closing. I'm wondering if the bleach solution is a good idea on squash with some abrasions/nibbles. Will it soak through?

And, for some reason, these last 2-3 weeks I have new baby squash popping up. If I harvest some of the older ones, will it encourage the babies to ripen sooner? Or, should I just pick them off?

Thanks


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Our big, green butternut finally turned brown. I'm sure my husband picked them all before he was supposed to, but the one squash we ate was very good. I guess that's what matters, isn't it? Now we have to figure out where to store them. We don't want the mice to get at them, but the garage is probably the ideal place; it doesn't freeze and doesn't get as warm as the cellar does.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Helpful hints : at thrift stores find inexpensive metal items (racks, holders, trivits etc. browse for ideas) to raise your squash off the ground after it has formed, it is better than hay, mulch , landscape cloth, because it allows for air flow around and can be used year after year .

After harvest to clean fruit for storage and throughout the growing season, spray your fruits, plants with a 3-1 or 4-1 solution of Hydrogen Peroxide and water: you will be so pleased with the results( an organic grower in Oregon gave me the tip ) A very inexpensive way to control unknowns that attack and destroy your fruits and plants .


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

  • Posted by malna NJ 5/6 (My Page) on
    Thu, Apr 11, 13 at 11:28

I received an email from Johnny's Seeds with some interesting information about harvesting and curing different types of winter squashes. Thought I'd bump this thread and share the link as many of us in the NE are getting ready to plant. There are other useful links at the bottom of the webpage.

Here is a link that might be useful: Eating Quality in Winter Squashes


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Butternut squash

I have lots of butternuts that haven't ripened for harvest and we've had our first frost. Leaves are wilted. Can I still harvest what's left on the vines even though they are still green?


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

Yes, gather and prepare/cook/eat them before you eat the ripe ones. My Dad loves green butternuts and routinely harvests them before they are ripe.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

A frost will kill off the leaves, if it has frozen, pick and use those squash first, they will not keep as well if they have been frozen.


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RE: inquiry-when to pick butternut squash

I live south of Houston, we planted butternut squash for the first time this spring. Not sure if it has gotten too hot, having prblms with the vines dying. But I do have squash, not a lot. You are saying to leave till frost. Is this true even for the southern states? Frost may not get here till Dec. so I leave the fruit on the vines till then, even if the coloring is tan, stripes all gone, and stem is drying ??


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