Japanese HEIRLOOM Also known as Orange Hokkaido. Fruits are small and shaped like an upside down heart, 4 to 7 pounds as a rule. The color is a bright orangish red so it also has decorative uses. The delightfully smooth flesh is just delicious. 15 seeds.
Indoors- Plant in individual biodegradable peat/cowpots 1/2”-1” deep, 3-4 weeks before last frost with soil temperature 70 degrees. Transplant 36” apart after last frost without disturbing the roots.
Outdoors- 1/2”-1” deep after last frost, in warm soil at least 70 degrees. Sow a few seeds per space/hill with 24-36”.
Harvest- Before heavy frost. Determine ripeness when it has turned color has a dull dry skin and you can’t dent the skin with your thumbnail. Leave two inches of the stem on squash and manage carefully so there is no damage which can shorten its storage life. Curing for 7-10 days in the sun to harden the rind and increase storage quality.
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. Fertilize on a regular basis by watering with compost tea. Select the more compact varieties if your space is limited.