“Tomatoes and squash never fail to reach maturity. You can spray them with acid, beat them with sticks and burn them; they love it.”
-S. J. Perelman
Reasons I’m in love with Butternut Squash:
Easy to grow
No scrambling to pick and harvest, this winter squash takes it time
When stored properly it keeps far into the winter months
Whether roasted, pureed, or baked… the recipe possibilities are endless!
It’s the most delicious of the squashes (in my opinion) 🙂
You don’t want to harvest the Butternut squash until it reaches the mature fruit stage when the skin has become hardened and cannot easily be pierced by your fingernail. Like I said above, this is a squash that takes its time as all winter squashes do, but it’s worth the wait. The bright and happy orange flesh inside is versatile in the kitchen and can be used in many recipes.
The seeds only germinate in warm soil so don’t plant until all signs of frost are gone. Squash thrives best when planted into a hill which allows the soil to stay heated. It’s a heavy feeding fruit (yes, botanically speaking it’s a fruit), so make sure to fertilize often. Squash is pollinated by bees so plant a few flowers nearby to draw in the bees to help locate the squash blossoms. You can start squash seedlings indoors if your growing season is shorter than most. This is a fantastic addition to the garden and high yielding, your neighbors and friends will be happy to take a couple off your hands at harvest time.
One of many from my garden. 🙂
You can roast the seeds like some do with pumpkin, or you can dry them out and save them for sowing the following year.
Cube the squash, roast it in the oven, and then puree it to make butternut squash soup. (recipe coming soon)
Butternut Squash Soup with garden tomatoes, jalapenos, parsley and Mexican crema.
Butternut Squash Soup with crushed pecans and apple bits.
Bon Appetit’s recipe for Winter Squash Carbonara with Pancetta and Sage.
Butternut squash french fries seasoned with sea salt and garden herbs. As you can see the possibilities are endless. 🙂
I prefer Burpee’s Waltham Butternut variety.
This award winner is reliable, productive and a long keeper! With very little seed cavity, thicker and straighter necks, ‘Waltham Butternut’ produces more flesh per fruit earlier and with better taste. (content courtesy of Burpee seed packet)
I really hope you consider it for your garden. I’ve been growing winter squash for many years and get no-fail results every time. Did I mention key words like “easy”… “delicious”… or “versatile??” 😀