Squash Planting Tips: How to Plant Squash in the Philippines
How to Plant Calabaza
Calabaza is a type of winter squash. Native to the Philippines, it has a large pumpkin-like appearance and is available in a variety of colours (dark-green, yellow, orange and green). Calabaza is a type of squash that has very large and massive vines, with gigantic leaves that effectively shade out weeds and retain moisture.
Purchase seeds from reliable sources.Calabaza is very rare to be seen at nurseries and gardening stores. Its availability is rare in many countries, including America, as it does grow best in the tropics.
Prepare the soil.Gather the materials to be used at gardening. This includes shovel, pitchfork, rake, and fertilizer. Dig two feet deep into the soil. Spread the fertilizer thoroughly with a rake, then also spread mulch, once you have taken a rake to the whole area.
- Clean the area while you're preparing the soil. Get rid of weeds, debris, etc.
- Form mounds one to three feet apart from each other. Though this step is optional, planting seeds in mounds will aid in withstanding high temperatures of heat and help to retain moisture.
- If you're living in a country that experiences freezing temperatures, start them indoors or wait until all of the last frost has passed.
Plant the seeds.Plant two to three seeds in every mound of dirt, burying them approximately one to two inches from the top of the soil.
- Once the seedlings sprout, thin them out. Remove weaker seedlings.
Continue to care for the plants.Water them thoroughly to give them good soaking before the weather gets too hot.
- Weed them.
- Fertilize monthly or every two to three weeks.
Make sure your plants are pollinated prior to fruit set.Let bees keep buzzing in your garden to pollinate your squash for fruit production. If pollination is your problem, you should consider:
- Planting flowers near your squashes to attract bees.
- Refrain from using chemicals of any kind.
- Hand pollinate them. Identify first their flowers. Since they are monoecious plants, they have both female and male flowers. Female flowers are characterized by having a little hump or swelling ovaries, while male flowers are lack this hump. Get some cotton swabs and simply gather the pollen from the male flower and rub it against the stamen of the female flower.
Care for the fruit.Lay them down in mulch. If you are growing them on a trellis, make a sling from heavy, unused fabric or clothes and tie them at the sides of the trellis. Make sure that you use a sturdy trellis, as a weaker foundation can result in tragedy.
Wait to harvest the fruit.Harvest can begin between 100 and 150 days after planting. Fruit that resists a fingernail's poking indicates ripeness. The shell should be hard enough to resist your fingernail's poking.
Video: Central Florida Gardening - Calabaza Squash
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