Just like it said on the seed package!

I believe I’ve spent approximately $1,000,000 on seeds over the years.  Plant and seed catalogs are usually addressed to “Gullible L. Scoggins.” I really suffer (on many levels) during the darkest days of winter; this makes me highly susceptible to seed catalogs filled with delicious descriptions and enhanced photos.

This spring, I sorted through my massive bin of partially used seed packets and ruthlessly (ruthlessly!!!) chucked everything dated prior to 2012 (like normal people do).  A large portion of the expired packets were for squash and zucchini. I love squash of every ilk – glossy dark zukes, gold crooknecks, pattypan-anything. Squash and tomatoes are summer incarnate.

My absolute favorite is the heirloom Italian variety Costata Romenesco with its dense, nutty flesh – it really tastes like something on its own.  The huge rambling vines put out relatively few fruit, so not the best for a compact garden.

But variety is the spice of life…so how to try several varieties and not end up with either a mountain of squash (as happened to me a while back) or a bunch of seeds left over?  California seed purveyor Renee’s Garden does a very cool thing – one pack of seeds with three (3!) varieties – the “Tricolor Mix”.  Brilliant! You get a gold-bar type (Golden Dawn), the dark green one that will go berserk (Raven), and a lovely pale gray-green Clarimore.

The zucchini trifecta from Renee's Garden seeds.  That's Costata Romanesco on the far left.
The zucchini trifecta from Renee’s Garden seeds. Plus Costata Romanesco on the far left.

The seeds are color-coded with just good ol’ food coloring, so you know what you’ve planted.  I got 100% germination (whoops) and a delightful variety and volume of zucchini.  And NO LEFTOVER SEEDS – so I will feel completely justified next February when ordering more. Hurrah!

4 thoughts on “Just like it said on the seed package!”

  1. That’s a great idea and a pretty selection you have. If you haven’t already tried it, zucchetta rampicante is an excellent choice. It can be eaten young and tender like summer squash or left to mature on the vine and eaten like winter squash. The bonus, besides the excellent flavor and texture, is the fact that it is not subject to SVB infestation. The down side is it lives up to its name, rampant! One vine will grow 15′ or more if it’s happy. I have grown it several years and love the weird looking thing. I’ve never tasted it as a mature squash because we eat them too fast to let them grow that big.

    1. The ol’ Tromboncino! Had totally forgotten about that. Now I have a reason to order more stuff from Fedco! (and/or Franchi Seeds from Italy)! Thank you, I think… – Holly

  2. I love costata romanesco, and really wish it yielded better. Someone needs to develop a cross of CR and a more reliable variety.

    1. Yep, I got about six beauties off one plant this year, then “pffffftttt” – but I think it was stem borer.

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