Posted by: Naomi Slade | May 13, 2010

Cucurbit Queen!

Growing squash, cucumbers and their kind is a satisfyingly speedy passtime. Butternut squash ‘Cobnut’ is rocketing out of the pot and trying to climb out of the propagator, ‘Crown Prince had seed leaves the size of my palm in five days flat and I am also the proud owner of three types of cucumber and two types of pumpkin.

Those who have been paying attention to my other blog will know that back in the Autumn I  saved some seeds from pumpkin ‘Mars’. This had been grown alongside patty pan squash, Crown Prince and sundry other cucurbits. Six months of neglect and mistreatment on my kitchen work top later, they still produced four healthy seedlings. Joy is unconfined and as I suspect that these creatures cross-pollinate like crazy, it will be interesting to see what sort of Squmpkin I end up with. Watch this space.

Not bothering with patty pan ‘Polo’ this year, though. They are quite pretty, but preparation is too much of a faff. If you pick early enough while they are still small, this is not a problem; but realistically early picking is not going to happen and life is too short to peel the decorative scalloped edges of otherwise slightly boring vegetables*.

I should perhaps point out here that the solid, sweet butternut types that mature a bit later in the year are delicious and not even a little bit boring, but with the light, summer fruiting patty pans I can’t get past the sneaking suspicion that they are basically a frilly sort of marrow.

Went to show some love to my new garden at the family home in Wales last weekend. Discovered that the grapevine in the furthest greenhouse is actually six grapevines. Yikes!

* Boring unless sautéed with lime and sweet chilli, but that is another story…


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