Spring Garden Tips

Winter Squash


Botanical Name

Cucurbita maxima, C. moschata, C. pepo




18 to 36 inches


3 to 15 feet


Mid to late summer: yellow, edible


Many shapes, colors and sizes including acorn, spaghetti, hubbard, turban and butternut


Full sun


Moist, well-drained, warm

Planting and Care

Squash germinate best in warm soil temperatures of 70 F to 105 F.

Begin sowing when the soil has warmed to at least 70 F and all danger of frost has passed.

VINING: Sow 4 to 5 seeds per hill at a depth of 1 inch. Space hills 5 to 6 feet apart in rows 7 to 12 feet apart. Thin to 2 or 3 plants per hill.

SEMI-VINING: Sow 4 to 5 seeds per hill at a depth of 1 inch. Space hills 5 to 6 feet apart in rows 8 feet apart. Thin to 2 plants per hill.

BUSH: Sow 1 to 2 seeds per foot of row at a depth of 1 inch. Space rows 5 feet apart. Thin to 1 plant every 3 feet of row.

Mulch the soil to suppress weeds and retail soil moisture.

Mounding some soil around the base of the plants will help discourage squash vine borers from laying eggs.


Squash bug, squash vine borer, striped cucumber beetle, bacterial wilt, powdery mildew, viral disease, scab

Varieties to Consider

Tay-Belle - acorn type, semi-bush, dark green fruit

Pasta - yellowish cream fruit with good flavor

Emerald Bush Buttercup - bush type


Harvest winter squash when the rind is firm, glossy and the portion touching the soil has changed from cream to orange.

Article Tags

Rate Article

0.0/5 rating (0 votes)

Ask Melinda

Didn't find what you were looking for?
Search for related articles, video tips, podcasts and audio tips to help you answer your gardening question.

Still looking?

Post a question for Melinda to answer.


Search Melinda Myers Site