Helping You Become a More Successful Gardener
CUCURBITA maxima 'Turk's Turban'
Turk's Turban Winter Squash, Winter Squash
A classic choice for autumn displays, the festive, multicolored fruits of ‘Turk’s Turban’ are unmistakable. The main body of this squash is flattened and bright red-orange, sometimes marked with dark green streaks. The blossom end bears a prominent, bulbous protrusion striped randomly with orange, green and white. Although used primarily for decoration, this old heirloom is of reasonably good eating quality. It also keeps well. Fruits ripen approximately 110 days from sowing.
Cultivated since ancient times by Native Americans, winter squash are warm season, annual vines native to tropical South America. The rambling stems of these plants bear large, golden yellow, trumpet shaped blossoms. Both male and female flowers occur on the same plant, and are pollinated by bees. The male flowers appear first, followed by the female flowers which can be recognized by the distinctive, bulbous ovaries at their bases. Following pollination, the female flowers develop into fruits; these are often masked by the plant’s huge, bristly, lobed leaves.
Sow the seeds of winter squash directly in mounds of rich, light, well-drained soil after all danger of frost has passed. Full sun is required for successful flowering and fruiting. To reduce the risk of fungal problems, avoid unnecessary wetting of vine stems and leaves. Monitor closely for leaf bugs and beetles, and for stem borers at the bases of the vines. As fruits mature in autumn, deer, birds and rodents may browse them, so protect as needed. Harvest before heavy frosts when the vines begin to brown and the rind is firm and solid in color. Cut from the vine leaving a short stem, taking care not to cut or bruise the fruits. Store in a cool, dry location, leaving space for air circulation to discourage the spread of mold.
12 - 1
A1, A2, A3, H1, H2, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
1'-3' / 0.3m - 0.9m
3'-20' / 0.9m - 6.1m
White, Orange, Dark Green, Orange Red
Green, Light Green
Green, Dark Green
Edible, Herb / Vegetable
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