Squash, Winter, Vegetable Spaghetti (Cucurbita pepo) - 20 Seeds
•American grown seeds
•USDA Zones 3-12
Spaghetti squash, also called vegetable spaghetti or noodle squash, is an oblong variety of winter squash. This type of squash can vary in color from ivory to yellow to orange. The orange varieties have higher carotene content and its center contains many large seeds. Its flesh is bright yellow or orange. The raw flesh of the spaghetti squash is solid. When cooked the flesh falls away from the outside skin in strands like spaghetti.
Spaghetti squash can be baked, boiled, steamed or microwaved. It can be served with or without sauce as a substitute for pasta. Cooking the whole squash is an easier method, but takes a longer time. The most traditional way to cook spaghetti squash is by slicing it in half and roasting it cut-side down on a pan in the oven.
Spaghetti Squash contains many nutrients including folic acid, potassium, Vitamin A and beta carotene. This variety of squash is low in calories at 42 calories per cup.
Gardeners with short growing seasons may want to start their squash seeds indoors a month before the last expected frost. Since squashes do not take well to transplanting, peat pots are the best option. Plant 2 seeds per pot, later clipping off the weaker seedling. Harden the seedlings by exposing them to weather for several hours a day for a week before transplanting them after the last frost once soil temps average above 60°F. Plant in very rich soil, 8-10 inches apart. To direct sow, plant the seeds a week or so after the last frost ½” deep, 3-4” apart and thin to 8-10” apart. Avoid planting them with potatoes. Keep moist, but avoid soaking the leaves as this can lead to rot or mildew. When vines develop, adding a layer of much can be very beneficial. By midsummer, pinch off all the blooms to concentrate the plant’s energy on the developing squashes. Seedlings don’t tolerate frost well, so provide protective covering if cold weather threatens.