Cheese

Cheese Culinary Pumpkin

(110 days) Cucurbita moschata Open-pollinated. Always exhibition-hall favorites, these handsome 6–12 lb wide-ribbed flattened tan fruits, 1' across or more, look like big waxed wheels of cheese. Identified by Hedrick in Cucurbits of New York (1937) as “one of the oldest varieties cultivated in America,” a distinctive group that has “remained remarkably stable.” Introduced to commerce in 1807 by McMahon. Some folks call this variety Long Island Cheese because it was once the preferred pumpkin for pies in New York, New Jersey and on the island.

Bright orange meat is coarse and quite fibrous, but its tender sweetness redeems its textural deficiencies and it does not deserve Hedrick’s terse dismissal: “quality poor.” Good for baking, deep cavity lends itself to stuffing. We have found it to be a dependable producer even in our climate and unmatched as a good keeper.



1740 Cheese
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A: 1/8oz for $2.00  
B: 1/4oz for $3.50  
C: 1/2oz for $6.00  
D: 1oz for $8.00  
E: 4oz for $22.00  
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Additional Information

Cucurbita moschata 

C. moschata are usually smooth and tan. They are the squash of choice in Zones 6 and south because of their relative resistance to the squash vine borers that torment acorns and buttercups.

Pumpkins

100–280 seeds/oz. ⅛ oz packet sows 3–8 hills. Botanically, there are no such things as pumpkins. But we know one when we see one. “Pumpkins” listed here are three species; Cucurbita pepo (mini pumpkins, small pie and some jack-o’-lanterns), C. moschata (cheeses) and C. maxima (jack-o’-lanterns and decorative).

Culture: May be direct-seeded or transplanted. Direct seeding: Sow 4–5 seeds per hill when weather has warmed after danger of frost. Allow 4–6' between hills. Thin to 3 best plants. Use row covers and low tunnels to hasten maturity and reduce insect damage. Transplanting: Start indoors three weeks before setting out. Do not disturb the roots. Transplant bush varieties 18" apart, vining varieties 30" apart. Tender, not frost hardy. Heavy nitrogen feeders. Excessive heat and/or drought can prevent blossom set, reduce yields. Pumpkins can take one or two light frosts on the vine. To improve flavor and storage, field cure for at least 10 days after harvest, covering if hard frost threatens. Store under proper conditions, at least 50° and 60–70% relative humidity in a place with good air circulation. Do not pile up pumpkins. Inspect periodically and be sure to use damaged, stemless or small fruit first. Minimum germination temperature 60°, optimal temperature range 70–90°. Days to maturity are from direct seeding.

Pests & diseases: BLR: Black Rot, PM: Powdery Mildew

Pest: Striped Cucumber Beetle
Cultural controls: use tolerant or resistant varieties, rotate crops, till under crop debris soon after harvest, use floating row covers until flowers appear, use plastic mulch, perimeter trap cropping (Black Zucchini and Blue Hubbard make particularly good trap crops), use yellow sticky strips, hand-pick early morning when beetles are very sluggish.
Materials: Surround, Pyrethrum (PyGanic), Mycotrol.

Pest: Squash Bug
Cultural controls: rotation, till in cucurbit debris before winter and plant a cover crop, boards on soil surface near squash will attract bugs overnight which can be killed, avoid mulching. Squash bugs lay their brown-brick red egg clusters on the underside of the foliage, often next to the central vein—destroy egg clusters on undersides of leaves.
Materials: Pyrethrum on young nymphs, AzaMax.

Pest: Squash Vine Borer
Cultural controls: butternut squash is resistant, maximas & pepos susceptible; rotation, plow in squash vine debris soon after harvest, use floating row covers, watch for wilting plant parts and destroy borer within.

Disease: Powdery Mildew
Controls: Use small plots to slow spread, plant indeterminate (viney) varieties, control weed competition.
Materials: sulfur and whole milk, mineral or other oils in combination with potassium bicarbonate, Actinovate.

Disease: Bacterial Wilt
Cultural control: Striped Cucumber Beetle is vector—control it; choose resistant varieties.