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Harvesting and Storing Winter Squash

Roast it, bake it, or cook it into soup.  However you like it, include some acorn squash in one of your meals.

September 7 is National Acorn Squash Day. This member of the squash family contains vitamins C, B6, A, thiamine and more.

You’ll get the best nutritional value and flavor when harvested at its peak. These as well as butternut and hubbard squash are ready to pick when the rind has turned from a shiny to a dull color and is too hard to penetrate with your thumb nail.

Use a hand pruner to cut the fruit from the vine. Leave a two inch stem attached if possible.

Only store mature blemish-free acorn squash for later use. You can maintain the quality and flavor for about 5 to 8 weeks by storing acorn squash at 50 degrees Fahrenheit and 50% to 75% humidity.  Squash stored at warmer temperatures develop yellow rinds and stringy flesh.

A bit more information:  Don’t compost the seeds. Instead roast them and enjoy them just like pumpkin seeds. Scoop out the pulp and rinse. Dry the seeds and roast at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.

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