did you know squash
Photo by Brigitte Tohm on Unsplash

All squash belong to the gourd family, but what are the differences between summer and winter squash?

It depends primarily on when they are harvested, their physical characteristics and how long they can be stored. Summer squash such as yellow crook neck, patty pan and zucchini are harvested when the fruit is young and the skin is thin and tender, while winter squash such as Hubbard, acorn or butternut’s outer skin is thick and tough and requires 80-120 days to mature. Summer squash grow in half the time. The advantage of winter squash’s thick outer skin is that it can be stored for months as long as it is in a cool, dry and dark place such as a basement or garage and a portion of its stem is still attached (otherwise moisture escapes). Because summer squash is so tender, it is very perishable and needs to be used within days of picking.