Sunday, July 22, 2007

Butternut & Gemsquash Update

Thank god for squash! If it wasn't for squash I'd have virtually nothing on my allotment now. We have harvested about 20 Rolet gemsquash so far and have been very pleased with ourselves. It's been years since I had gemsquash! The kids are not convinced that it's a good thing though.

The vines are very vigorous and have spread to cover the entire area that they were planted in and almost completely covered the compost heap. The vines and leaves are prickly so the slugs don't like them, although the slugs do seem to get to the flowers if the flowers are trailing on the soil.

The butternuts were very sad when it rained so much. Valiantly doing their best they had actually put out blossom and produced one fruit each. Two weeks ago I put them over black plastic groundsheet (worteldoek) and my goodness, what a difference. The new flowers that they are producing are the size of my doubled fists and the plants have renewed vigour.

Next year I'll be planting all my squash through groundsheet. The straw that I had put under them seemed close to useless with the amount of rain we've had and the difference in the warmth between the groundsheet and the straw is phenomenal. I am hoping to harvest at least three or four butternuts per plant and I have five plants. That should keep us going a while.

I'd like to try some other pumpkins next year, maybe Futsu. Butternut is always something we'll plant though - perhaps not in the same quantities, but nonetheless, it's a favourite around here.

1 comment:

Rob said...

Congratulations on the gemsquash success!!! You must be well chuffed with that.

I have a great selection of squash seeds that I can send to you if you are interested (including futsu). I am moving country next year and I doubt Venice has much in the way of gardens or allotments so have thousands of veg seed to rehome.