On Jan 27, 2012, annzup1 from Drexel, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:
Great-aunt brought the seed for this winter squash, which she called, "Japanese Sweet Tater," back from a trip to Baltimore in early 1950's. She gave some seeds to my grandmother. My grandmother grew this crazy looking monster and a few years ago, gave me the majority of her seed stash. Initially, I thought she'd made a mistake and given me a gourd seed. But, no. All I can say, is that while this winter squash is the BEST tasting that I've grown or had, after each plant gets a few fruits, start pinching the flowers back or it will run and run (maybe all the way back to Baltimore from foothills of N.C.). This plant, at least locally, is a seriously running vine; regardless of garden space, unless stopped after setting some fruits, it will run through everything else one has growing in a LARGE garden, set a fruit at each station, then head to nearest highway, and hitch. Every time I plant a hill, I start singing "Sweet Hitchhiker." It can be a prone to powdery mildew but hit it with some water in morning during summer and it's fine. In truth only about 4 plants are really necessary for quite a A LOT of winter squash.
On Nov 24, 2006, critterologist from Frederick, MD (Zone 6b) wrote:
I did not grow this in my garden, but I found a huge "Neck Pumpkin" for sale at my local nursery. I should've weighed it and taken a picture... it was well over 10 pounds, and if the curve were straightened I'm sure the "neck" would've been at least 30 inches long in addition to the bulbous base. It looked like a huge, curled butternut squash.
I baked it and then mashed it for use in soup and pie. The flavor is outstanding, sweeter than the little "sugar pumpkins" I've used in the past. There is very little fiber, thanks in part to the small seed cavity (the neck is solid). The specimen I bought yielded about a gallon of thick pumpkin puree. It's a good thing cooked pumpkin freezes well!