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Winter squash varities

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Winter squash varities

Post  herblover on 2/25/2011, 4:32 pm

My friend and I are in the planning stages for this year's garden and are thinking about winter squashes. Can anyone give me some guidance on good varieties for an SFG?

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Re: Winter squash varities

Post  quiltbea on 2/26/2011, 12:02 am

I'd be interested in the answer as well.

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Winter squash

Post  ander217 on 2/26/2011, 7:02 am

There are several bush varieties of winter squash. You can google and find them on various seed catalog sites.

I grew regular butternut last year on my trellis and had no problems with the growing, only with the squash bugs and SVB. At least on the trellis it was easier to find the bugs and eggs and smash them. They did grow huge leaves, but I think those helped support the vine when woven through the strings. (It might have been a problem with netting, but the strings worked great.)

I was afraid the heavy squash would break off of the trellis, but the stems grew really thick and heavy and held the squash up just fine. In fact, I had to cut them away with a knife when picking.

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Vining winter squash

Post  Megan on 2/26/2011, 7:14 am

Vining winter squash can get extremely big. They can be trellised, though, like Ander said. But they will have a tendency to want to spill off the trellis onto the ground. If you don't have a lot of space, you had better both trellis AND prune. I had 5-6 pound fruit which did fine. I tried to support them on the trellis but turned out they didn't need it. (Bigger, you may want to.) One thing to look out for is that if they are not supported and you accidentally shift a vine, the weight can bring the whole thing (fruit and vine and all) down on top of you. Probably won't hurt the plant but it makes a huge mess and you'll have to figure out how to re-arrange everything.

Make sure your conduit trellis is supported with rebar. I used 2 foot lengths last year with half of it pounded into the ground. If I had to do it again, I'd go for 4 foot with maybe 1.5 foot pounded in. (But that's not likely to happen around here without a pile driver, ick! I had to use a sledge hammer just to get it one foot in.)

I used nylon stocking "footies" as trellis ties. I did not cut them into strips. They worked out very well for the most part, though in one or two places they seemed to hold moisture against the fruit or the vine and that led to weakening and insect attack, mostly when then weight of the vine kinked it over the tie (bending in half, basically) and me not noticing it in time. So review all your trellis ties DAILY.

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