I've harvested about 20 or so Butternut squash this year and recently
noticed that there seems to be some mold starting on the stem. Is this due
to the area I'm storing them in not being cool enough? If so, if I move them
will the mold stop growing or should I peel and freeze them now? TIA
I would take them outside and lay them on the porch and let them stay there
for a week or so (as long as it isn't going to freeze). This will let them
dry out more. While they are "curing" for storage, the moisture escapes
through the stem. That is probably what you are seeing on yours. I still
have 5 winter squash in my storage room from picking last September and
October (two are butternut).
Perhaps your squash were picked slightly before complete maturity (the stems
should have become completely hard, like the hardest of wood).
Dwayne's point about the squash needing to be 'cured' before going into
storage is also important. It's best to lay them out in a warm, sunny place
(protected from frost and freeze at night) before putting them into storage.
I also recommend a wash in a disinfecting bleach solution (10 parts water
to one part bleach) and a thorough drying before storage.
As for freezing the squash, I always cook them and put them through a food
mill first. That way they are good to go for soups, pies, and (a favorite in my
house) 'pumpkin' waffles.
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is 'comcast')
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