Mystery Squash Review

Last week I cooked up the mystery squash I grew this year!

I simply chopped it in half and roasted in the oven (at 350°F for 20 or 30 minutes).

It’s ancestor was definitely a spaghetti squash. The shell/skin is identical to spaghetti squash in color and texture, and the flesh was vaguely stringy and tasted exactly like spaghetti squash.

I added a pat of butter and some salt to one half to enjoy for dinner with eggs and greens beans.

With the other half, I made stuffed spaghetti squash using a recipe from Moosewood. The filling is composed of rice, onion, apple, orange, spices, and pecans. Yum yum! Very good!

And of course, I saved the seeds to plant next year! Fingers crossed they produce another squash…can’t wait to see what the next generation looks like!

Saving Alll the Seeds

I’ve made like a squirrel this year, saving a bunch of seeds. Since the zinnia seeds, I’ve saved…

…columbine,….

Courtesy of Nate’s balcony garden

…cilantro,…

Courtesy of Dad’s back porch garden

….and echinacea.

Courtesy of the Stanford grounds

I’m also patiently waiting for my own cilantro and beans to be ready to dry…

And don’t forget about the squash! I will definitely be saving some of those seeds when I finally cut into it.

Saving Zinnia Seeds

In addition to tomato seeds, I’m also trying my hand at saving zinnia seeds this year.

See those dead flower heads? I read that if you pull the dead petals out, you’ll see the seeds at the ends, which you can plant next year.

Like so:

Here’s the handful I collected – from all different color zinnias.

Yet another version of “I have no idea if this will work, but sounds fun to try!”

Saving Tomato Seeds

I want to learn how to save seeds. I’ve done a little of this in the past, with mixed success. This year, I decided to save seeds from the volunteer tomatoes that I picked when we were exploring the fruit trees of Stanford’s campus.

This isn’t the first year I’ve saved tomato seeds. I’m not yet picky about what variety of tomatoes I grow, and so I’ve saved seeds from hybrid tomatoes before, which I know won’t produce fruit true to the parent fruit, but I enjoy the results nonetheless.

I think the tomatoes that I picked the other week were probably born from seeds of a hybrid tomato. The tomatoes were all about the same size (larger than a cherry or grape tomato, smaller than a Roma), but some plants produced red fruit and some produced yellow fruit. It will be interesting to see what kind of tomatoes I’ll get from their seeds.

The way I save tomato seeds is to first extract the seeds from the tomatoes, then rinse them to get most of the tomato hunk off of them, and then I leave them in a cup of water for several days.

I think you’re actually not supposed to rinse the seeds, so they can ferment (like so), which supposedly removes the gel coating from the seeds. We want to remove the gel coating because it inhibits germination.

I didn’t really do that this time. There was a little bit of tomato gunk and it did get a little moldy, but probably not to the level of fermentation. Oh well. Gardenmyths.com says it’s not necessary anyway.

I rinsed the seeds off, and dried them on a paper towel.

I’m storing them with my other seeds in a sealed plastic bag to keep them dry.

Now I wait until March to plant the seeds and see what grows.