This very deep green ribbed and warted squash appears to be almost black. The golden orange flesh is delicious with a strong taste similar to hazelnuts. Fruits are large with weights close to 10 pounds a possibility. An excellent storage variety.
Germination: 7-10 days
Germination Temperature: Optimum soil temperatures 70-85ºF
Seed Sowing Depth: 1/2-1" deep
Sowing Indoors: 3-4 weeks before last frost. Provide 70-85ºF soil temperature. Sow 2-3 seeds per cell/pot. Sowing into individual biodegradable peat/cow pots reduces root damage when transplanting. Transplant after last frost, 36-48" apart.
Sowing Outdoors: Sow after last frost when soil temperature is over 70ºF. Sow a few seeds every 36-48".
How much does a packet plant: 12-15 foot single row, 3-5 hills
Harvest: Before heavy frost. Determine ripeness when the skin has turned color and becomes dull dry. You will be unable to create a dent when pressing your thumbnail into it. Leave two inches of the stem on the squash and manage carefully so there is no damage which can shorten storage life. Cure for 7-10 days in the sun to harden the rind and increase storage quality. Wipe any debris off skin before storing in a cool dark place with 50-55ºF temperatures and 50-65% humidity.
Tips: Plant in fertile soil, amended with compost or well rotted manure and keep well watered. They benefit from growing on black plastic and by using row covers for weed, insect control, and more rapid growth.