La Madera Squash, from the Mountains of New Mexico

Hal

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The looks of squash baffle me ... the different species often look quite a bit alike. And yet, they have a range ...( it was probably several years before I finally got it into my head that Jack o'lantern pumpkins are brothers to zucchini.)

Your 3rd photo of the C. moschata squash looks like the Marina De Chioggia squash (C. maxima) I grew last year. However, those didn't develop the warts that the seed catalogs like to show.

They also didn't mature properly but I'm giving 1 plant another chance thinking that it may have just been the rambunctious pumpkins that interfered with Marina's maturity in 2013.

I will be so bold as to link the post where you show some of your La Madera, Hal: (LINK). In my garden, they do look to be a different color. Keep in mind that they should have another 6 weeks before frost.

Steve.
Those were not the only ones I had either, just the only ones which I managed to find time to take pictures of.
Perhaps your lack of warts was due to climate or your seed source?
 

digitS'

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Imma gonna post a picture later of the orange fruit. It won't be convenient to carry the scale out there but these squash only had a look of maturity a few weeks ago. What I said earlier about their size will prove to be wrong!

"Native Seeds say, 'The fruits can be 5-25 lbs.' I'm guessing the low end in my garden and that is fine for DW and me :). . . I'm so looking forward to harvesting these."

Part of that is right but my guess at the "low end" of the scale ain't gonna be correct. They are growing by leaps and bounds! La Madera must like it here.

Steve
 
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Hal

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Imma gonna post a picture later of the orange fruit. It won't be convenient to carry the scale out there but these squash only had a look of maturity a few weeks ago. What I said earlier about their size will prove to be wrong!

"Native Seeds say, 'The fruits can be 5-25 lbs.' I'm guessing the low end in my garden and that is fine for DW and me :). . . I'm so looking forward to harvesting these."

Part of that is right but my guess at the "low end" of the scale ain't gonna be correct. They are growing by leaps and bounds! La Madera must like it here.

Steve

So it sounds like your going to get decent sized squash! Has the skin color changed any?
 

digitS'

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I don't really believe so, Hal.

I will try to get a picture of one that was in a previous post and include a familiar object to judge size. The picture I took this morning doesn't do it . . .

La Madera is probably not a good choice in a small garden without trellising. The vines are very long. There are small fruits developing all around but the earliest are beefing up. Maybe I will take the scale out but it will have to be Thursday. Then, I'll need to decide if climbing in there will bring a risk of stepping on the vine.

I was a little overly-excited to show you and hadn't looked at the photo ... here is this morning's picture. It's a big guy but you should expect a better picture soon!

Steve
DSC01046.JPG
 

Hal

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You can wait till harvest time to weight it, I would not want you squashing the vines.
I'm really liking that color and the shape with the faint ribs.
I can see long vines posing a problem for small gardens but for me it would be a blessing as the bigger the vine the more nodes to root down at and the more leaf as well to fuel fruit production.
 

digitS'

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This may be the littlest of the La Madera:
DSC01074.JPG


This has to be a "gene pool" variety. They are in various sizes and colors. There is a striped one out there! Expect a hefty La Madera on that scale soon.

I hope I didn't mess up the color by trying to overcome taking the picture in the shade. Is that the color of the Pink Banana? Yellow, orange, pink ... whatever it is, there's a little La Madera, warts and all :)!

Steve
 

Hal

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It seems to be a landrace, funny how you seem to have got more diversity than I did with mine.
The picture is fine by the way :)
I'm going to grow out some more of my original seed stock this year to see what I get, maybe I can do a comparison of mine against yours?
 

digitS'

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We ate that squash. It was delicious!

Two surprises: the skin was hard as a gourd! There was relatively little flesh but it had an exceptional flavor.

Now, I have an explanation for these surprises. This squash really was ready for harvest weeks ago! Doesn't it make sense that the skin would toughen? It probably didn't grow any these last few weeks.This would explain the dry, highly flavorful flesh and that it was not thick and moist.

This variety has a very early maturity date. That's my guess and these La Madera plants are going down hard, right now! This was not the garden with the light, cucumber-killing frost. This is senescence. The plants have reached the end and nutrients are being packed away in the seeds for the next generation.
DSC01080.JPG

There are a couple larger ones still out there :).
DSC01079.JPG

There are 2 Buttercups in the near left-hand corner and an Autumn Crown hybrid under the large La Madera. The striped, orange, green, and grayish-green squash are all La Madera. They are 3# to 16#, and up.

By the way, that large Buttercup is an exceptionally large one for my garden. It weighs 7#! This has been a good year for squash.

Steve :)
 

digitS'

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Well, I haven't done very well keeping it, Bay'.

It does downstairs to the basement and hangs out on shelves for awhile. My best is to get it into January. I've always got pumpkin (squash) pie for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. That's about it. The conditions are probably not favorable in the basement but I've got other problems.

Even the Buttercup, which I've grown for decades, barely has a chance to mature before fall frost. Immature winter squash is just fine to eat but they don't keep well. This problem is what prompted me to ask TEG gardeners for a recommendation. @Hal had one: La Madera.

This has been a hot summer! The pumpkins, squash, melons and cucumbers have done outstandingly well. It may not be much of a test for La Madera but, as I say, I think it matured weeks before now! If we'd had a killing frost the first week of September, I bet it would be fine and in good condition for winter.

Steve
 
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