Pink banana squash review

These things crack me up!  If you’re thinking of growing them, be forewarned…

Pink banana squash

Remember that far side of "Early vegetarians return from the hunt"?

This one weighed in at 27 pounds. I thought I was picking a nice, manageable one. I was hoping for 10-15 pounds. I snipped the stem, hauled it out of its tangle of vines and unmowed grass, and discovered its diameter was about three times what I’d thought it would be.

Pink banana squash

I was not wrong when I hypothesized that these would not even fit in the oven whole.


Wheelbarrow of pink banana squash

These ones look positively dainty by comparison - "only" 13, 19, and 19 pounds!

The best part, though? They taste really wonderful! Closest “regular” squash I can compare it to is butternut: firm, no strings at all, deep orange, good flavor.  They smell a bit like a cantaloupe when you cut into them, and they are sweet, but not melon-y tasting.

Ok…I’m going to try to wrestle this bad boy into some jars.  I think half of this one will be more than a canner load – s’ok, I think I can foist off a lot of it on the neighbors I’m making salsa with tomorrow.

There are about 30 more of these lurking out and about. I think most of them are in the 15-20 pound range, but hey, this one surprised me, so who knows? Most of them are destined for Food Gatherers, but I’ll get my year’s supply out of this, too.  And I also discovered today that my lone butternut squash plant has set numerous fruit, too! Jeez, who would’ve thought I’d become the Squash Queen?

Final verdict – would I grow these again? Absolutely.  But then, my goal is hundreds of pounds to donate, and I have tons of space.  If that’s not true for you, I might grow one plant, or share with a neighbor. Like slaughtering a cow, picking one of these is definitely an event to be shared with the whole neighborhood!



  1. Jocelyn said,

    September 7, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    Whoa! I love butternut, so I could get behind this variety…slap a mailing label on one and send it to me! 😉

    • Emily said,

      September 7, 2011 at 1:43 pm

      A mailing label and a yard of stamps!

  2. September 7, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    Nice — so delicious, I know. I tried to save seed last year, but jumped the gun and they molded in the jar. If you save any seed, Emily, can I have some?

    • Emily said,

      September 7, 2011 at 1:42 pm

      Yep, I have seed, and nothing around that will cross-pollinate it. I’ll save you some – remind me toward spring that you want them.

  3. El said,

    September 7, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Hilarious, Emily. I grow them too but it wasn’t a good year for (frankly any) squash. They do make a great soup, though!

    • Emily said,

      September 7, 2011 at 1:43 pm

      Your blog was actually the first place I’d heard of them. I somehow failed to register their size, apparently. 🙂

    • Emily said,

      September 7, 2011 at 1:44 pm

      If you’re in the Ann Arbor area, I’ll send you home with one!

  4. Karen said,

    September 8, 2011 at 1:29 am

    Wow! Those are gigantic! I grew pink banana squash for the first time this year and I’ve been picking them when they are about 12 inches long. I was thinking that the more I picked them, the more the plant would produce. What do you think? Did your plant produce a lot of those big squash? Do you think the texture of the large squash is as smooth as in the smaller one? If you have any seeds from your gigantic squash, I would love some! Thank you!

    • Emily said,

      September 9, 2011 at 6:13 am

      At 12″, they resemble unusually tasty zucchini. They were also a pale yellow, with undeveloped seeds. These ate big enough to be turning pinkish orange, and the flesh is more similar to butternut squash. Very tasty and stringless. Curious to see how they’ll be when fully mature.

      These were really prolific – several squash per vine. I usually picked the small ones off and left one big one per vine. Picking the small ones did seem to encourage more flowering.

  5. Heather said,

    September 8, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    That’s beautiful. And really, really weird. I think I’m going to pin it on Pinterest. (And now I want to try some…)

  6. Alexia said,

    September 8, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    I love it! It’s so nice that you donate so much to the food pantry, too. But as for the others…here in Madison (WI) there are THREE different parties that I know of centered around winter squash (Squashfest, Squash Bash, and the Pumpkin Potluck) that have each been going on for at least 10 consecutive years. People get really creative with their dishes and you can learn lots of interesting new ways to use up your store of squashes — plus I bet you could foist a few off on people who want to cook something for the party if you really wanted to.

  7. September 8, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    Holy Smokes! Those suckers are giants! I’m going to have to try that next year. How was it for bugs and disease? I’d love to get some seed if you decide to save some and share.

    • Emily said,

      September 9, 2011 at 6:09 am

      About half of it got vine borers, but almost all the vines survived. I poked at the borers with an unbent paper clip and/or small sticks inside the vines, and the vines had set down enough ancillary roots to survive the disruption.

  8. September 8, 2011 at 8:31 pm

    […] Eleanor on September 8, 2011 in Food Security, Gardening, Local Food, Resilience Emily over at Eat Close To Home has a review of her pink banana squash.  You have to check it out.  They are so big they […]

  9. Michael said,

    November 29, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    I live in Ann Arbor and I was thinking of making a Veggieducken ( for a Thanksgiving reprisal with some friends, but I’ve never seen a banana squash in this area before. You didn’t happen to grow any this year or know where else to find them?

    • Emily said,

      November 30, 2012 at 11:31 am

      I have seen them at the A2 farmers’ market this year. Smaller than 27 lb, but still big. I think Busch’s in Dexter had some this year, too. Arbor Farms had some last year. They are starting to show up in displays of “heirloom pumpkins” and random hard squash. Thing is, I think they are all gone now that Halloween and Thanksgiving are past. :/ (I didn’t have a garden this year, due to moving.)

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