When to harvest winter squash?

Asked September 9, 2020, 2:32 PM EDT

Hello, I am a first time winter squash grower and have very nice looking butternut, spaghetti and delicata plants in my garden. I am confused about when to harvest. The skin on many squash cannot be dented or pierced with a fingernail. Colors vary but many are looking like what I see in the grocery store. But the vines are still mainly green. Some sources say wait to harvest until vines are brown and dry. Other sources give numbers of days. Can you direct me to information that will help me definitively know when my squash are ready to pick? Thank you! Susan

Multnomah County Oregon

2 Responses

A great rule of thumb with squashes that are meant to be stored is when the curly tendril is dry and crispy. The closest one to the squash will be the one you are looking at. All the ones I can see do not look quite ready, but they will get that way quickly. Are you still irrigating them, normally when they reach the appearance of maturity you can stop irrigation and that will help the stems dry. They look amazing, good job growing them.

Thank you, Chrissy, for your response. So helpful!