Canada Crookneck Squash

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Canada Crookneck Squash

The Canada Crookneck Squash (Cucurbita moschata) is a bottle-shaped winter squash with a curved neck, weighing 2 – 4 lbs. Skin color is a creamy yellow / buff at harvest and will become a bit darker in storage. Skin is smooth and relatively thin for a winter variety, flesh is salmon-red, fine-grained, meaty and dry, with an excellent sweet flavor. Vines are long-running, but very productive. it takes 110 days to ripen, and In New England squashes are generally ripe for harvest and winter storage in September from plants direct-sown in late May / early June. The flavor and texture is superb, rich, meaty – not stringy – and sweet. It is an excellent squash for serving mashed, and in pies and soups. The plants are very productive, and appear to be resistant to vine borers and bacterial wilt problems. This winter-keeping squash is an ancestor of the modern Butternut squash. It was a very common variety in New England gardens in the 1800s, and may have originated there. This variety was commonly listed in New England seed catalogs, appearing as early as 1827 in John B. Russell’s Boston catalog. Russell described it as, ‘small and superior quality.’ In 1834 Boston seedsman Charles H. Hovey listed the squash, and it was the only winter squash variety included in a boxed assortment of kitchen garden seeds for families offered in Joseph Breck’s 1838 Boston catalog. Fearing Burr praised the Canada Crookneck highly in The Field and Garden Vegetables of America (Boston, 1865): ‘The Canada is unquestionably the best of the Crooknecked sorts. The vines are remarkably hardy and prolific, yielding almost a certain crop both North and South. The variety ripens early; the plants suffer but little from the depredations of bugs or worms and the fruit, with trifling care, may be preserved throughout the year.’ The flesh is, as Burr described, ‘salmon-red, very close-grained, dry, sweet, and fine flavored.’

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Territory

StateUnited States
Region

Northeastern US