Prepare yourself

Squash is coming.

I’m not kidding.

A few years ago, when chronic pneumonia was not a mainstay in my life, and before a swallow test showed why, I grew squash of both the green (zucchini) and yellow (yellow) kind. The problem with squashes, as anyone with a garden knows, is that they are sneaky little bastards. You’ll go through a picking session, ooh and aah and marvel over how one seed – one seed! – can produce such abundance.

Squash and zucchini April 29, 2015

This can lull you into a state of mind where you are not as alert as you could be.

As you should be.

Because – again, as anyone who gardens and plants squashes know – you will miss some.

“Wait, Captain, what do you mean ‘miss them’? How could you possibly miss any?”

Sneaky little bastards is how: they play Jedi mind tricks and your gaze slides right over them in search of the next fruit to pick. This is not just for squash, mind you: the same thing happens with okra, among other things. But squashes are in a category unto themselves and are by far the tops at this game.

So, you overlook some. Some, you think, might need another day or two to get to the proper length, but then you get busy, perhaps with the bees, and before  you know it, it’s been four days, and you have to steel yourself to go back out to the plants, wondering if any have attained sentience and are awaiting your arrival to ambush you. What you find is a collection of squash that varies in size from “decent, normal eating” to “small child”.

Zucchini and squash May 22, 2015

It may be difficult to put this into context, given that there is no true frame of reference for the upper part of this scale. Allow me to assist.

Giant zucchini, small child, May 2015

The harvest size is so large, it can in fact comfortably seat two small children, and probably three.

Giant squash and two small children gnawing on raw okra pods, May 2015

Why do I sound the alarm bell? The zucchini plants – two of which made it out of four seeds sown – are putting out the beginning of their flowers. The yellow squash, however, always earlier, and very prolific, are coming on. Fast.

Squash, May 2018

This was yesterday. Tomorrow, they will all be another inch longer, at least. It isn’t quite visible from this angle, but this plant has SIX in bloom squash forming. There are five yellow squash plants. While I know everyone thinks math is a waste of time in school, in gardening and farming there is very real math, and you should know it.

Especially if you grow squash.

Until next time, peeps: be well.



3 thoughts on “Prepare yourself”

  1. Am I crazy? I put out 12 plants!! 4 yellow zepher, 4 globe and 4 black beauty. LOL I did find and make a squash relish last year that I canned 4 cases of and plan to do at least 6 cases or more this year. Sneaky little buggers they are too!

  2. You may be! What will you do when they all start coming in and you wind up with a mountain of them even canning/freezing/making oodles of zucchini bread won’t cover? Start leaving mystery gifts for your neighbors? Sneak around in parking lots looking for open windows or unlocked car doors to throw them into unsuspecting strangers’ vehicles? LOL

  3. If it gets to the point of that (and around here all those things do happen LOL) I will call my neighbors who have goats who love squash. I can eat squash one way or the other every day, but I am just one person. I do can it also in tomato based pasta sauces, but usually by the time the tomatoes are ready the squash is slowing down. I also found a summer squash soup that looked good so will try that and if it is good will can it up too. We have a small freezer/fridge combo and don’t have enough power to run a big freezer. (off grid here)

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