Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Squashini? Zucchinash? Cross pollination in the garden.

Every year i grow a pretty big (relatively speaking) garden. At one time i loved to collect seeds from my plants. Since i like to grow a variety of plants and started growing open pollinated heirlooms almost exclusively, i now purchase most of my seeds to guarantee they haven't cross pollinated.   Most of this years seeds came from Baker's Creek, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange and Botanical interests.

Every year, beside all the seeds i plant i end up with a few volunteers. For the last few years we've had a lot of volunteer gourds. This year i spotted this interesting fella in coming in my zucchini bed. The bottom of it looks very much like the gray zucchini i planted last year.  It had several baby squash on the plant, and they all have this yellow strip in the middle. So strange! 

This year i planted Black beauty Zucchini, Yellow crooked neck squash and a few other varieties. This volunteer looks like it could be a cross between a zucchini and a yellow crooked neck. Many of the gourds we've grown have been half green and half i was a little worried that it had crossed with a gourd and would be completely inedible.  

i decided to slice up some zucchini, yellow squash and our mystery squash and compare them. Surprisingly, the mystery squash looks identical to the zucchini inside. i had my kids do a taste test, with their eyes closed and they could not tell the difference.  So we are calling it a Squashini. :)  

My summer squash have just started to really come in.  So far i have been harvesting Dark green zucchini, Black Beauty Zucchini, Golden Zucchini, Yellow crooked neck squash and Squashini! i'm still waiting for my patty pans to mature, and i have a ton of other volunteers that i'm watching. Most looks like gourds, but it will be fun to see what we end up with.

What is the craziest cross-pollinated vegetable you've ever grown?


Post a Comment