• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • Nicole Alderman
  • r ranson
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Mike Haasl
  • paul wheaton
stewards:
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Dave Burton
  • Joseph Lofthouse
master gardeners:
  • jordan barton
  • Greg Martin
gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • Ash Jackson
  • Kate Downham

What squash climb the best?

 
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 7
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I had a bad year here, out of the 300-some squash (summer and winter) and pumpkin plants I put in of 20+ types, I currently (September) still have 4 plants: 1 tromboncino and 3 (still young) kabocha. All the rest died of fungus or squash beetles. The things in better soil hold out longer (although none long enough to set fruit) so soil improvement is happening, and the ones that are still alive climbed things. I think it got them enough air flow to avoid fungus, and maybe got them up out of where the beetles can reach them so easily. So for next year, I am wondering Which squash varieties climb best?  Maybe if I start with things that will go up, I'll get some squash.
Thank you! :D
 
pollinator
Posts: 280
Location: Chicago
70
dog forest garden fish foraging urban cooking food preservation bike
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My neighbors have a butternut climbing a fence.  This year I planted a Navajo green Hubbard for the first time, and it really likes to climb. Climbed up my bean tripods and all over my currant bushes.
 
  • Likes 8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
One year I threw some spagetti squash seeds along a ditchbank. One washed down and behind the house and took root. I had no idea about this. In the fall I looked at the peach tree and saw these huge yellow fruit hanging down and asked the wife what kind of tree it was...lol ( it was a rental and our first year in it) so when I went to look it was 1 squash plant that had taken over the entire top of the tree....
 
pollinator
Posts: 292
Location: the mountains of western nc
75
forest garden trees foraging chicken food preservation cooking wood heat homestead
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i’ve allowed my landrace moschata squash to climb whatever they could get to this year. they brought down a lot of the bigger weeds that i thought might be able to handle them and in one instance a larger squash pulled its own vine down off a fence it had grown up but not through.

i think you could be okay with anything with a decent vining tendency as long as whatever you’ve got them climbing is sturdy and especially if there’s a way you can make sure that the weight of squash isn’t just held up with tendrils, but that the vine itself goes through the structure.
 
gardener
Posts: 1711
Location: South of Capricorn
658
dog rabbit urban cooking writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I also have had some luck with spaghetti climbing.
Not sure about there, but here the advantage with spaghetti squash is that I can plant it before any of the other squash- it doesn't seem to like the crazy summer heat like the other squashes do. So it finishes early, I rip out the vines, and the other squash are just getting established and I don't have to worry about frankensquash mixes.
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

greg mosser wrote:
i think you could be okay with anything with a decent vining tendency as long as whatever you’ve got them climbing is sturdy and especially if there’s a way you can make sure that the weight of squash isn’t just held up with tendrils, but that the vine itself goes through the structure.


That's what I'm trying to figure out, what  has a decent vining tendency? I didn't have a chance to check what I planted, most of it fungused out before I ever saw it's growth habits.
Sturdy is not a problem, I think I'm adding a cattle panel arch tunnel.
I'll make sure to weave them, thank you, hadn't thought about that.
:D
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Tereza Okava wrote: the advantage with spaghetti squash is that I can plant it before any of the other squash- it doesn't seem to like the crazy summer heat like the other squashes do. So it finishes early, I rip out the vines, and the other squash are just getting established and I don't have to worry about frankensquash mixes.


Interesting! I grew it in NM because it did tolerate the dry heat, and it ran all summer and half of the winter.... I'm in a different climate now, and that's complicating the things I can do.
 
Tereza Okava
gardener
Posts: 1711
Location: South of Capricorn
658
dog rabbit urban cooking writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Pearl Sutton wrote:I grew it in NM because it did tolerate the dry heat.


This may be exactly the reason. Spring and early summer here are generally dry, and summer has a lot of sudden torrential storms... which might be why it's not happy here in summer. (it just withers over a span of a few days, as if it were saying "that's it, I'm done". No bugs, no disease, just foop! over.)
We are also still getting to understand the weather here too. It is helpful to think about these things (spaghetti squash doesn't like wet, for example) to figure out how to adapt to the weather changes we're seeing, since it isn't as easy as just "plant in spring, harvest in summer".
 
greg mosser
pollinator
Posts: 292
Location: the mountains of western nc
75
forest garden trees foraging chicken food preservation cooking wood heat homestead
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i can send you some of mine! aside from that i don’t really know. i see ‘bush’ or ‘semi-bush’ in descriptions from time to time, and you’d want to avoid those (frequently smaller stuff: delicata and some other pepos, some kind of ‘single-serving’ sized butternut, etc). there may some correlation with fruit size and vine length, because bigger squash need bigger vines to support them?

i have a volunteer orange acorn squash that popped up in the greenhouse that’s a pretty aggressive viner.
 
Posts: 97
Location: Central Indiana, zone 6a, clay loam
49
forest garden foraging medical herbs
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Sorry to hear you've had a rough year squash wise, Pearl. Losing so many plants sounds super frustrating. I think aiming for squash that can climb well is a great idea. Surprisingly, I have had good luck getting fairytale pumpkins (C. moschata) to climb. One climbed a few foot tall stump last year, but this year they have climbed all over the honeysuckle and anything else they can get to. It's like a sea of squash! Admittedly, some of them require additional support, given their size. And it can be a little trickier to find them. But it seems to be working quite well for the most part. Hoping it will keep the critters away from the fruit. All my other squash plants got munched before they could even flower, seems this one is is less palatable in addition to being able to get out of reach. I've got tons of seeds, if you would like.
 
pollinator
Posts: 539
Location: BC Interior, Zone 6-7
119
forest garden tiny house books
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My galeux d'eysines have very thick tendrils that twine amazingly quickly and tightly onto whatever they encounter. It's actually a problem because I want them to stay on the ground and root at the nodes for drought resistance. The ends of the vines grow up, not out, mush more than other squash I've grown.  Eventually they weigh themselves down or find something to climb. The squash can get really big, so they'd need support, though.
 
pollinator
Posts: 405
Location: Vermont, USA
108
hugelkultur dog forest garden fungi foraging books chicken cooking medical herbs homestead
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I’ve seen people “train” summer squash to climb, sort of. But it’s not natural at all. I have butternut and turban (buttercup) both climbing on trellises this summer. I have saved some mesh bags (like onions and potatoes come in) to support them if they get big enough to need it.

I doubt they will. First frost expected this weekend, and they aren’t even close.
 
master steward
Posts: 8717
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
2510
hunting trees books food preservation solar woodworking
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've tried to get my Waltham butternut squash to climb but they really don't want to.  I made them go up a trellis by threading them through the cattle panel and if I stayed on top of it, I could get them to climb.  The jury is still out on yield but I think the climbers are outproducing the groundlings.

I had acorn squash that seemed to climb tolerably.  If they hit a fence they climbed up a bit and then maybe went horizontal.  So I don't know if they really wanted to go up or if they had to due to the fence being there.

I also had compost pumpkins that kind of climbed.  They worked their way up a fence a bit but more horizontal than vertical.

The only true climber I have is birdhouse gourds.  They want to go straight up.  Not a squash though...
 
gardener
Posts: 3208
Location: Pacific Wet Coast
1174
duck books chicken cooking food preservation ungarbage
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Pearl Sutton wrote:

I had a bad year here, out of the 300-some squash (summer and winter) and pumpkin plants I put in of 20+ types, I currently (September) still have 4 plants: 1 tromboncino and 3 (still young) kabocha.

My squash hasn't done well either, but thankfully we don't have those awful bugs here. Any time I tried to grow squash on a trellis, I had to woman handle it into cooperating. That would be a challenge with 300! I also found I had to support the fruit if it was large. It would be interesting if you ran a comparison next year?

I built a series of 5 connected pallet composts this year which are filled with horse shit etc. I'm thinking I'll try planting my squash right in the bins next year and run the plants along the edges of the pallets (about 4 inches wide). It won't exactly have to climb, but if I thread it in and out the pallet flats occasionally, maybe that will help it hang on?
 
pollinator
Posts: 3027
Location: Officially Zone 7b, according to personal obsevations I live in 7a, SW Tennessee
1118
forest garden foraging books food preservation cooking fiber arts bee medical herbs
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
How about an edible gourd? Try out cuccuzzi, maybe cuccuzzi, or snake gourd. I've bought it under each name. I like it about 18" long. I throw it in some soup, it has a substantial texture. My carnivore family don't miss the meat if I Include it in a veggie soup. It freezes well too, doesn't get mushy.

It's a slow starter, but it tried to eat my shed one year. I had some trellis attached to the side, it exceeded 10 feet tall. I had to keep pulling the vines from the roof.
 
Jay Angler
gardener
Posts: 3208
Location: Pacific Wet Coast
1174
duck books chicken cooking food preservation ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Joylynn Hardesty wrote:How about an edible gourd? Try out cuccuzzi, maybe cuccuzzi, or snake gourd. I've bought it under each name. I like it about 18" long. I throw it in some soup, it has a substantial texture. My carnivore family don't miss the meat if I Include it in a veggie soup. It freezes well too, doesn't get mushy.

It's a slow starter, but it tried to eat my shed one year. I had some trellis attached to the side, it exceeded 10 feet tall. I had to keep pulling the vines from the roof.

Do you know how much heat it needs? We are technically "7a" but that's because we don't get cold. We also don't get hot, so plants that want a summer with lots of temps in the high 80's F simply sit around and don't produce/ripen in my climate.
 
Joylynn Hardesty
pollinator
Posts: 3027
Location: Officially Zone 7b, according to personal obsevations I live in 7a, SW Tennessee
1118
forest garden foraging books food preservation cooking fiber arts bee medical herbs
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Huh. there is other stuff with the common name serpent gourd... Baker Creek has the one I mean. The first review has lots of info.

Jay, I dunno about the cooler weather. We do get hot hot hot here. If the skin gets hard, you gotta peel it, and at that stage, the seed is also hard, but not ripe, seeds are not pleasant to eat at this stage, I cut them out and discard them. For seed saving, wait for the gourd to dry out, and become feather light.
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
That gourd looks like a serious winner!

So let me recap what has been listed so far:
Butternut  
Green Hubbard (huge, need hammocks for them)
Spaghetti
moscatas (butternut, Seminole pumpkin, tromboncino, cushaw, calabaza  are the ones I had planted this year that died of fungus or bugs)
Galeux d'Eysines  (awesome, I bought one a couple weeks ago, and saved it's seeds!)
Acorn
Cucuzzi, Serpente di Sicilia Edible Gourd

Cool! Lots of neat ideas, and thank you for seed offers, check your PMs :D

There has to be a way to grow squash in this climate without spraying it... there are pumpkins grown all over, I need to see if anyone is managing them without chemicals. I know most are chemicaled to a  horrifying degree.

I got a book at a booksale yesterday, one of  Rodale's big books of pests and controls, will be reading the squash section of it soon! I glanced enough to see that nasturtiums (looking for climbers) will help with bugs. And I bought seeds for them last spring :D

Thank you all! Keep up the suggestions, I'm REALLY grateful for the info! :D
 
pollinator
Posts: 321
114
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I don't normally trellis squash, but this year I had 2 varieties that reached over and commandeered the nearby bean trellises. One was a 'Shark Fin', and the other was 'Calabasas de las Aguas'. The Shark Fin is from Great Lakes Staple Seeds and the Calabasas is from Native Seeds Search. This is my first year growing either of them.

Both have some nice big fruits on them. I'm amazed the trellis is holding up!
 
Mike Haasl
master steward
Posts: 8717
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
2510
hunting trees books food preservation solar woodworking
  • Likes 6
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My butternut results are in!  

Squash I transplanted and forced up a trellis yielded 13 squash on 4 plants (18" apart)

Squash I direct seeded and forced up a trellis yielded 31 squash on 21 plants (two plants per 18" spacing so maybe they were overcrowded)

Squash I direct seeded and let sprawl yielded 24 squash on 15 plants

Squash in a 3 sisters planting yielded 13 squash on 12 transplanted plants (transplanted from the direct sown and sprawled row)

So, in my short season, transplanting from a greenhouse started pot is a clear winner

Trellising gave 1.5 squash per plant and sprawling gave 1.6 squash per plant.  Considering the trellising ones were at double the density, I'd say that trellising did better and clearly didn't do worse.  Other than the labor to guide them up the trellis.
 
steward
Posts: 5272
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
1951
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Lagenaria squash (birdhouse gourd) are great climbers at my place.
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Mike Haasl wrote: Trellising gave 1.5 squash per plant and sprawling gave 1.6 squash per plant.  Considering the trellising ones were at double the density, I'd say that trellising did better and clearly didn't do worse.  Other than the labor to guide them up the trellis.


THANK YOU!! That's incredibly useful information to know!! And since I think trellising might cut down on my fungus issues, that adds even more pluses for me.

A question though, you had to "force" it up the trellis? Butternut was listed earlier in this thread as a climber, does it not climb a trellis on it's own? How much forcing did it take? The tromboncino and kabocha I have on trellises I had to show them where to go, tied up the first couple of runners, then they took over from there, I'd definitely call them climbers. Does butternut not climb?

:D

 
Mike Haasl
master steward
Posts: 8717
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
2510
hunting trees books food preservation solar woodworking
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Up higher in the thread I mentioned that mine don't like to climb.  The start out flat and I have to tie them up. Then they grow like a soft noodle and I have to keep tying them up or threading them through the cattle panel mesh.  They definitely didn't want to climb on their own.  Given their druthers they'd head horizontally and when they lose support, bend down until they grow down to the ground.

Once they were going up the trellis a ways, it was easier to thread them through since they were pointing that way already.  But I did make a pass through the garden nearly every evening to tuck and train them for about 6 weeks.  Once they were at the top of the 5' trellis they could head horizontally along the top of the trellis and tendril onto their friends.

If you had an arching trellis, once you get them part way up it they might be happy to climb over the top of it.

I think trellising also helped when we had a frost a week ago.  The sprawling squash got every leaf burnt but the vertically trellised ones only got the leaves at the top burned.  All the leaves going up the trellis were protected by the sacrifice of the leaves above.
 
Anne Pratt
pollinator
Posts: 405
Location: Vermont, USA
108
hugelkultur dog forest garden fungi foraging books chicken cooking medical herbs homestead
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I said my butternuts climbed, but they also needed help. I wove them in and out on the trellis, and when ignored they proceeded horizontally, tendrils grabbing along the way.
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ah, ok, my error. Thank you both!   :D
I'll add that to my notes on them ....
 
Posts: 268
Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
32
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
In my experience, given opportunity just about every squash but zucchini will climb all over everything. (This year I had a watermelon I had to discourage from climbing the back fence.)

Here's a trick I once saw: stock panels on cinder blocks (laid flat on the blocks), to get the squash plants completely up off the ground. Needed some initial guidance but once they got bushy the plants wanted to stay on top on their own. Didn't need to provide anything to climb on, and with central support, stock panels are strong enough for anyone to walk on (especially if you get the kind with 4" squares -- very stiff). I might overlay it with 2" chicken wire to make sure young fruits don't dangle below.

[This year I made tomato cages from stock panels -- five cages from a $40 panel -- and it's the first thing my killer tomatoes haven't been able to demolish.]
 
pollinator
Posts: 130
Location: South Carolina 8a
57
hugelkultur dog foraging cooking rocket stoves woodworking
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Pearl Sutton wrote:I had a bad year here, out of the 300-some squash (summer and winter) and pumpkin plants I put in of 20+ types, I currently (September) still have 4 plants: 1 tromboncino and 3 (still young) kabocha. All the rest died of fungus or squash beetles. The things in better soil hold out longer (although none long enough to set fruit) so soil improvement is happening, and the ones that are still alive climbed things. I think it got them enough air flow to avoid fungus, and maybe got them up out of where the beetles can reach them so easily. So for next year, I am wondering Which squash varieties climb best?  Maybe if I start with things that will go up, I'll get some squash.
Thank you! :D



I have had great success with Seminole pumpkin this year. They climb well, and are not as heavy as the trombocinos are. North Georgia Candy Roaster is another good variety for you to try, but they may get too heavy for most vertical structures to support. I am currently growing all three, and hope to form some sort of landrace in the next few years/decades.

My trombocino seeds have been naturalized for 6 years now, and this is the first year i have introduced the other varieties. I have harvested just over 1000 lbs from my 1000 square foot garden this year so far.

All three of these varieties can endure the vine borerers, squash bugs, and humidity with great success.
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Rez Zircon wrote: stock panels on cinder blocks (laid flat on the blocks), to get the squash plants completely up off the ground. Needed some initial guidance but once they got bushy the plants wanted to stay on top on their own.


That's interesting!Wonder what goes on under the panels as far as bugs, rodents and weeds... Hm.. Might try that. Thank you!! :D
 
pollinator
Posts: 317
Location: SW Missouri • zone 6 • ~1400' elevation
84
goat fish books chicken sheep ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Most years, I can't grow a squash of any kind, nor a cucumber. The only visible causes I've been able to identify are squash bugs and vine borers. The last time I tried to grow squash trellised, I doubt anything got more that two feet up. (Except for one dipper gourd that lived and produced.) This year we let 'em sprall, so we could encourage the vines to put down roots where they touched the soil. They're all starting to really struggle now, but most of the squash have produced something, and we've been able to harvest a muskmelon and a zucchini. (Yes, one. I know, right?) I have applied bug killer into the wounds made by vine borers. Mostly diatomaceous earth, with a little sevin. (I paniced. I hope to ween myself off the sevin. It's not encouraged here, and I don't wanna be that guy eíther. Much rather not poison my food.) My cucumbers are nearly done now, but produced like gangbusters, though they're vertical and no bug killer was applied. I'll have to compare my planting times to previous years. Maybe I finally hit the sweet spot where you beat the bugs and escape the frost? I'm really not sure how helpful any of that is to you, but I felt like it might have some relevance, since we're close geographically and might have similar pest pressures. I'll be following to see what you learn. It may help me in the future.

I think this whole thing is a recent development. Seems like 6-10 years ago, I could just buy and plant the seed and 90% of varieties would produce fruit. Neighbors would lock their doors and hide from us in zucchini season.
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

T Melville wrote: My cucumbers are nearly done now, but produced like gangbusters, though they're vertical


That is exactly the theory I'm working with. Get them up out of bug and fungus zone.
I lost all my cukes too. And all types of melons.
My count for the year is 3 tromboncino (one of which I'm seeding) 1 scallop squash, 1 cucumber. Zero melons. And I planted all kinds of different types of all of these. 99% failure rate. Sad part is the reason I did all those varieties was to see what grows well here. I still have no useful data. At the moment "none" and that's not an answer I want to hear, I LIKE squash etc!! Hate buying it here, very heavily sprayed.

:D
 
Rez Zircon
Posts: 268
Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
32
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Pearl Sutton wrote:

Rez Zircon wrote: stock panels on cinder blocks (laid flat on the blocks), to get the squash plants completely up off the ground.


That's interesting!Wonder what goes on under the panels as far as bugs, rodents and weeds... Hm.. Might try that. Thank you!! :D



Had the same thought, but the biggest panels are 5 feet wide. Leave enough space to work between and at cinder block height, you can rake out underneath to keep it from being colonized. Squash will shade out weeds well enough. -- Pallets would probably work well too, and are piled up free most places (please, take more!) so long as they're not resting on the ground to make damp spots.

Must not be zucchini's year. I planted seeds twice and none came up. Broke down and bought one, and tho the plant looks healthy, it never grew (it's still as small as when I got it in June) and tho it produced a few male blossoms -- that was it. And I haven't seen the usual bags of homeless zucchini roaming the streets, so maybe it's a general thing. Not enough sunspots? wrong magical incantation?? a cure for zucchini poisoning???

Conversely the adjacent acorn squash is trying to take over the world, and has about a dozen big squash on it (not yet ripe). On the other side, the cukes have done well off and on tho gave up early, and the canteloupe has 3 or 4 fruit (netted up but still oblong so may not beat the frost). Feral watermelon (originally a sugar baby) has several fruit in progress (mostly large for the variety); domestic watermelon has just one, a bit small for the variety. Crenshaw melons and spaghetti squash didn't come up at all. So for vine fruit, this year has really been a mixed bag.

 
Tereza Okava
gardener
Posts: 1711
Location: South of Capricorn
658
dog rabbit urban cooking writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Pearl Sutton wrote:

T Melville wrote: My cucumbers are nearly done now, but produced like gangbusters, though they're vertical


That is exactly the theory I'm working with. Get them up out of bug and fungus zone.


+1 here last year. First time I had decent cuke production in a while, all vertical (I even put some in pots, and had even crazier production).

I also find that taking a break for a season or two helps. I took 2 years off of zucchini after a very frustrating last season (not one fruit), this year, I have 6 in the ground that are coming along like gangbusters. Some years are better than others, no use trying to do the impossible year in, year out.
 
Posts: 2
Location: S.W. Missouri USA
2
  • Likes 6
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
While butternut squash have overtaken my backyard I have found Kabocha squash growing in a tree, up the side of my house, my back porch and over the butternut. This was my first year planting it and hadn't really expected much out of it based on the plants in the garden. The two plants that I stuck in the ground near the backyard were forgotten, until the sight of pumpkins hanging from a tree caught my attention.. they prefer to climb apparently. And climb everything.
 
gardener & author
Posts: 1978
Location: Ladakh, Indian Himalayas at 10,500 feet, zone 5
420
trees food preservation solar greening the desert
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Rez Zircon wrote:
Must not be zucchini's year. I planted seeds twice and none came up. Broke down and bought one, and tho the plant looks healthy, it never grew (it's still as small as when I got it in June) and tho it produced a few male blossoms -- that was it. And I haven't seen the usual bags of homeless zucchini roaming the streets, so maybe it's a general thing. Not enough sunspots? wrong magical incantation?? a cure for zucchini poisoning???



Nope, I was hounded by those homeless zucchini this year, for the first time for me over here on the other side of the planet. So it can't be the sunspots.
 
Rez Zircon
Posts: 268
Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
32
  • Likes 8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Rebecca Norman wrote:
Nope, I was hounded by those homeless zucchini this year, for the first time for me over here on the other side of the planet. So it can't be the sunspots.



Maybe zucchini are migratory, and it was your turn to have 'em? :)
 
pollinator
Posts: 1316
Location: Virginia USDA 7a/b
311
hugelkultur forest garden hunting chicken food preservation bee
  • Likes 9
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I pull down some branches and tie up the vine very loosely. These are landrace moschata. Vines are upwards of 50’ long and I got them in late. I can also provide seeds, this started from a mix of a bunch of moschata but they have tended large (like small pumpkins) this year. Every year is different, last year they were mostly small. I way over plant and what grows over the others is the winner.
E8700EDD-A152-4241-B31D-DDABAECF4070.jpeg
Squash patch
Squash patch
C2D5D3AF-C3C8-4870-8000-D2E685C36F57.jpeg
Tree squash
Tree squash
 
pollinator
Posts: 157
Location: Wichita, Kansas, United States
29
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've found that with a few minutes every couple days I can train any vineing squash up a trellis or fence.  
I haven't left them to their own devices since I stopped letting them sprawl on the ground.
I really like tromboncino on a trellis.  They grow longer and straighter that way.
 
Mike Haasl
master steward
Posts: 8717
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
2510
hunting trees books food preservation solar woodworking
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here's a side by side comparison on butternuts vs bird house gourds in my greenhouse.  The butternuts do angle up a bit as they vine out, maybe so that they can climb over obstructions.  But you can see how I tied it up and it isn't using that support to continue to climb.  By comparison, once the birdhouse gourds found the trellis they shot straight up it.  The on on the right lost it's grip and flopped down until it could grab on again and climb straight up again.
Volunteer-butternut-on-the-ground-trunk-is-by-the-banana-at-the-left-side-of-the-picture.-Birdhouse-is-on-the-cattle-panel-at-the-back-of-the-pic.jpg
Volunteer butternut on the ground, trunk is by the banana at the left side of the picture. Birdhouse is on the cattle panel at the back of the pic
Volunteer butternut on the ground, trunk is by the banana at the left side of the picture. Birdhouse is on the cattle panel at the back of the pic
Birdhouse-gourd-climbing-like-a-pro.-Vine-on-right-lost-its-grip-and-had-to-do-a-U-turn-to-continue-climbing..jpg
Birdhouse gourd climbing like a pro. Vine on right lost its grip and had to do a U turn to continue climbing.
Birdhouse gourd climbing like a pro. Vine on right lost its grip and had to do a U turn to continue climbing.
Butternut-s-growth-tendency.jpg
Butternut's growth tendency
Butternut's growth tendency
 
Pearl Sutton
steward & bricolagier
Posts: 6106
Location: SW Missouri
2716
goat cat fungi books chicken earthworks food preservation cooking building homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Mike Haasl: thank you! That's what I was wondering!
The kabocha I have on a bit of fence climbed it, ran out of fence, looked around, found something else and is eating that too. Cthulhu squash! That's the kind I'd like to have. It's also strangling grass where it's on the ground.
 
Look! It's Leonardo da Vinci! And he brought a tiny ad!
100th Issue of Permaculture Magazine - now FREE for a while
https://permies.com/goodies/45/pmag
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic