How to grow patty pan squash

Love courgettes and butternut squash? Then why not try growing tasty patty pan squash too, with the help of our step by step guide.

Do it:

May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep

Takes just:

30 minutes

At its best:

Jul, Aug, Sep

If you love eating courgettes and butternut squash, but fancy trying something a little different, why not grow patty pan squashes? They're surprisingly easy to grow, despite their exotic appearance.

Patty pan squash can be raised from seed in May, to be planted out once frosts have passed, usually in late May or early June. Young plants may need extra protection on cold nights, so have bell cloches or fleece to hand, just in case cool weather is forecast.

Find out how to weather-proof your veg plants.

You'll get the heaviest crops in a sunny, sheltered spot, but plenty of moisture and a well-fed soil are also essential. Improve the soil by digging in lots of well-rotted manure, your own garden compost or a proprietary soil improver.

Find out how to grow patty pan squashes, below.

You will need

  • Patty pan squash seed
  • 9cm pots
  • Multi-purpose compost
  • A propagator or plastic bag
  • Organic matter
  • A bell cloche
  • High-potash liquid feed

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Fill 9cm pots with good quality multi-purpose compost and sow two seeds per pot. Water well, then put the pots in a propagator or plastic bag and germinate on a sunny windowsill.

Fork plenty of bulky organic matter into the soil, improving an area at least 50cm square and 30cm deep where each plant will grow. Re-firm the soil afterwards.

Thin out to leave the strongest seedling and plant it out after the last frost. Create a shallow depression in the soil around each plant, to direct water to the roots. Cover plants with a bell cloche on cold nights or windy days.

You'll get the heaviest crops when growing in a sunny, sheltered spot, but plenty of moisture and a well-fed soil are also essential.

Keep soil moist by watering around the plant, taking care not to wet the foliage and flowers. Feed every fortnight with a high-potash liquid feed once the flowers appear. Harvest squash regularly, right up until the first frosts.

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