Cucurbita maxima, and a Blue Hubbard Squash

squash 1aThis wrinkled squash is a Blue Hubbard.  It has bluish-gray skin.  Is it a fruit or vegetable?  It is technically a fruit but in use it is generally a vegetable.

 

According to Wikipedia, the Blue Hubbard is  a cultivar of the Hubbard and is in the species of squash: Cucurbita maxima.  The origin of the species is traced 4,000 years back to a wild plant variety in South America.  Different types of squash plants were introduced to North America as early as the 16th century and by 1776 were cultivated across North America by the Native Americans.

Another variety is the Golden Hubbard which has bright orange skin.

squash 1bThis is one plant, believe it or not, I’ve checked!  We did not plant it either.  We must have tossed a reject into this area last year, because this is a total volunteer plant.  We have kept it watered everyday and it is going crazy.  We cook the squash like any other winter squash- cut in half and placed face down on a cookie sheet for about an hour.  Add a little butter and brown sugar and you’ve got your hearty meal or two!

This year I will be looking for squash soup recipes too.

squash 2The female bloom [with the possible baby squash start], needs to be fertilized.squash 3The male bloom on the same plant, maybe on a different runner, is prepared to fertilize with the help of bugs and bees. squash 4Here is a small squash getting started.  We tried to cook one like this last year, but the shell is so thick there really wasn’t any flesh inside to feast on, so we didn’t even cook it. squash 5Another small size squash, you can see that they get their color right away.  squash 6You can notice the shapes of the leaves and how they protect the squash from the sun and heat. squash 7 squash 8 squash 9The squash should keep growing until the first frost when the plants will die back.  If one particular squash gets pretty big it can be taken from the vine early- we have 2 or 3 that are getting pretty huge and will be almost too heavy to carry!squash 10 squash 11Yeah for winter squash!

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2 thoughts on “Cucurbita maxima, and a Blue Hubbard Squash

  1. Whitney

    Yea for volunteer squash! Fond memories of my volunteer winter squash last year. It took over my garden area and beyond, yielded 70+ little striped yellow squashies, and it thrived even when I didn’t water it. But they were more decorative than edible. Maybe if I’d tried to cook them like you described above that would have worked! And I had a volunteer pumpkin plant that yielded a few good pie pumpkins. No squash or pumpkins this year, but beans and lettuce instead.

    Reply

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