Waltham Butternut Squash

featured-waltham-butternut-squash
Butternut squash or butternut pumpkin, is a vining crop with fruits that have a sweet, nutty flavor. Although referred to as ‘winter’ squash, any squash is considered a ‘very tender’ plant that does best in warm temperatures and can be stunted by cold. Alternatively, squash has a relatively long growing season that leads me to believe it will be harvest ready ‘around winter!’ As a good source of fiber, vitamin C, manganese, magnesium, and potassium as well as an excellent source of vitamin A and vitamin E, squash makes a great addition to the home garden.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butternut_squash

Plant description
Waltham Butternut Squash is a vining crop with fuzzy, broad leaves bearing golden fruits.
Seasonal preference: Spring
Hardiness: Very Tender
Germination duration: 8 to 10 days
Germination conditions: Light
Days to maturity: 85 to 110 days
Companion plants: Beans, Onion, Corn, Nasturtium, Potatoes
Incompatible plants: Unknown
Seed description: White, teardrop shaped
First leaves description: Round and stubby, smooth with rounded edges
True leaves description: Stubby, ruffled edges with tiny hairs
Thinning time: Once seedlings reach 2 to 3-in tall
Final spacing: 18 to 24-in
Plant height: 10 to 12-in
Plant spread: 10 to 12-ft
Root depth: 10 to 12-ft
Light preference: Full sun
Moisture preference: Well drained
Soil preference: 6.1-7.5 pH, in hills or mounds of dirt
Produce size: 8 to 10-in
Produce yield: 4 to 5 fruits
Flavor: Sweet, nutty
Harvesting
When temps drop to 50-degrees leaving 2-in of stem
Use
Fresh (Cooked), Canned, Frozen
Storing
Cure butternut squash to further harden the shell by storing it off of the floor in a single layer in an area with good circulation and a temperature of 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately two weeks. Store at a temperature of 50 to 70 Fahrenheit degrees with between 50 and 70 percent humidity. Store only those squash that don't have cuts, bruises or damage from insects or disease, because injured squash spoils quickly. Ideally, store butternut squash in a single layer with space between them. Check them occasionally, and remove any that are turning soft. When cured and stored under these conditions, Waltham Butternut Squash should keep throughout the winter. However, if your squash was subjected to weather under 50 degrees Fahrenheit for an extended period of time or frost, they may not keep as long as they would have if they'd been harvested earlier.