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Overgrown spaghetti squash

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Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  moswell on 7/13/2015, 1:28 pm

Help!  My spaghetti squash is a monster and it's taking over not only my garden, but my entire yard!  This picture is from a week ago, and it's only gotten worse.  It's taken over the middle bed where I'd originally planted it, and has moved on to both other beds on either side plus it's headed across my yard.  If I cut it back, how badly will I hurt it?

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  sanderson on 7/13/2015, 1:59 pm

Why not try a trellis for the vines on the front of the box (facing the photographer)? Then you can carefully prune the lateral branches that are reaching into the other boxes. It's a good squash for growing vertically, otherwise it will just sprawl without mercy.

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  moswell on 7/13/2015, 2:03 pm

When I prune, are there things I should avoid?  Do I need to do something to the vines to protect them from insect attack after cutting? I might have time to do a trellis next weekend...
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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  sanderson on 7/13/2015, 2:53 pm

I don't here in California, but maybe folks in your area have more info. Very Happy

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  boffer on 7/13/2015, 3:25 pm

Spaghetti squash is the most prolific and dominant squash that I grow.  I've intentionally, accidentally, and ruthlessly broken off obnoxious vines with no ill affects.  However, other than PM during cool summers, I don't have the pest or disease issues that you might have.

I've quit saving squash seeds or allowing volunteers to grow in the compost pile, because every plant, regardless of variety, ends up with some spaghetti squash characteristics.  grrrrr!
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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  moswell on 7/13/2015, 6:19 pm

@boffer wrote:Spaghetti squash is the most prolific and dominant squash that I grow.  I've intentionally, accidentally, and ruthlessly broken off obnoxious vines with no ill affects.  However, other than PM during cool summers, I don't have the pest or disease issues that you might have.

I've quit saving squash seeds or allowing volunteers to grow in the compost pile, because every plant, regardless of variety, ends up with some spaghetti squash characteristics.  grrrrr!
Hah!  Maybe I should ask in the mid-Atlantic forum.  My spaghetti squash was attacked by SVBs, but I saved it by pulling out the nasty little critters from the vines.
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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  boffer on 7/13/2015, 7:34 pm

Yep, I was thinking about SVBs. We don't get them here.

It's my understanding that they attack the stem near where it enters the soil. I don't know if breaking a stem sends out an attractive scent to them to attack at the break.

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  Mikesgardn on 7/13/2015, 8:20 pm

I don't know if cutting it back will hurt it, but that is a great looking squash plant.  And congratulations on removing the vine borers!  I've grown spaghetti squash on a trellis, although it looks too late for you.  I say let it go, and pray that you don't get downy mildew!
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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  sanderson on 7/13/2015, 8:42 pm

Moswell, You don't have to post a question like this in a Region. This is a universal question / problem. My trellises are 8' high and the squash go up one side and over to and back down the next trellis!

Mike, My vining winter squashes have runaways and I just carefully lift a runaway back to the trellis and either weave it or tie it back to the trellis. Moswell should be able to carefully separate the lawn runaways and train those to grow upwards.

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  Scorpio Rising on 7/14/2015, 8:04 pm




Hah!  Maybe I should ask in the mid-Atlantic forum.  My spaghetti squash was attacked by SVBs, but I saved it by pulling out the nasty little critters from the vines.
Moswell, how evactly did you do that with the SVBs?  This is my first year back to SFGing, and will actually get to eat some of my beloved patty pan squash soon!  Lost the battle, year after year after year....not this year! Patty pans are bush types though.  Easier to manage.

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  moswell on 7/14/2015, 8:18 pm

@Scorpio Rising wrote:



Hah!  Maybe I should ask in the mid-Atlantic forum.  My spaghetti squash was attacked by SVBs, but I saved it by pulling out the nasty little critters from the vines.
Moswell, how evactly did you do that with the SVBs?  This is my first year back to SFGing, and will actually get to eat some of my beloved patty pan squash soon!  Lost the battle, year after year after year....not this year! Patty pans are bush types though.  Easier to manage.

Thanks, Mel!
Well, first I tried diatomaceous earth, but then I noticed the frass at the base of the stem, so I just sliced the stems open and pulled out the nasty little grubs. Then I covered the stems with soil in the hopes that it would protect them. Apparently it worked!
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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  Scorpio Rising on 7/14/2015, 8:38 pm

I actually tried that last year in a desperate effort, but I think I was too late.  Not one plant made it.  Imwill be more vigilant for sure!  Glad it worked!

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  moswell on 7/14/2015, 8:48 pm

@Scorpio Rising wrote:I actually tried that last year in a desperate effort, but I think I was too late.  Not one plant made it.  Imwill be more vigilant for sure!  Glad it worked!

Sad , sorry it didn't work last year.  I admit, it was gross, and it's the first time I was successful.  Here's a picture of the squash today.  I went away for about a week and a half, and I hope it can wait until Friday when I'm off work to try to trellis and prune it back.  I had to take this pic from halfway across my yard to get the whole thing in the frame! For the record, that's three 4x4 boxes there that the thing has basically overtaken. Smile

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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  moswell on 7/14/2015, 8:50 pm

Also, this is the first time I've grown spaghetti squash.  The other time I had SVBs it was with zucchini plants, which seem a bit more fragile than this monster! I have to do something before it takes over my poor tomatoes!
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Re: Overgrown spaghetti squash

Post  sanderson on 7/15/2015, 2:28 am


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