Storing winter squash & pumpkins

If your pumpkins and winter squashes are ripe then you can bring them in to store now – if the skin is well cured then they should last several months.

How do I know if they are ready?

  1. The skin is hard – you can’t easily dig a thumbnail through it
  2. The skin has changed colour – eg Uchiki Kuri have turned from pale yellow to deep orange, queensland blue have developed a blue hue, sweet dumpling have developed stripes
  3. The stalk has hardened – if it is still green, then the squash probably needs a little more time
  4. The leaves are dying back

How to store them:

Pumpkins and squashes need to be kept fairly warm to store well, so bring them into the house and decorate your windowsills with them. Try to space them so that they are not touching each other and air can circulate around them – they will store longer that way. Also, make sure they are dry and check them over for any signs of bruising/rotting – you can use any that might be a bit bruised first before they do start to go bad.

How long will they keep?

If they are well-ripened and healthy, then they may well store right through till spring without starting to rot. Expect 2-3 months at least!