Tatume squash, also known as ‘Calabacita’, is one of the best options for San Antonio vegetable gardeners looking to grow a reliable squash. At Rainbow Gardens we’ve always known this, but the hard-to-find squash isn’t always available through our growers for us to be able to offer it to you. However, this weekend we are able to offer you the elusive Tatume squash transplants fresh from our awesome growers at Gabriel Valley Farms. Why all the fuss about a squash? Well, that’s exactly what this specialized blog is all about. Read on to see why you should give this vigorous growing squash a place in your gardens today! Bonus…our Tatume transplants are certified, organically grown!

7 Reasons You Should Grow Tatume or Calabacita Squash Today!

1. Tatume squash is highly resistant to squash borers. Anyone who has grown any type of squash here in San Antonio knows that squash borers can be a real pain in the…. garden. Tatume squash is crazy resistant to the squash borer moth which lays eggs inside the stems of squash plants. The eggs hatch and the larvae (caterpillars) mature and eat their way out of your plant before you even know you have a problem. No worries with Tatume squash!

2. Tatume squash likes our growing conditions. Because Tatume is a native plant to our next door neighbor country, it is perfectly happy growing in our hot weather conditions. 

3. Tatume squash is a vigorous grower that produces a big harvest. Tatume squash vines grow and grow. Tatume is an open-pollinated squash that produces tons of flowers (bringing in lots of pollinators) followed by tons of squash. (In fact, you may need to reconnect with your friends and neighbors as you might find yourself sneaking up to their doorsteps to share your surplus of squash!) You must have plenty of space in your garden to plant Tatume, it wants to grow! 

4. Tatume squash is an heirloom. Tatume squash does not readily cross-pollinate with other squash varieties, meaning that it will be super easy to collect and save true seeds from this plant. Once you’ve tasted it and see how well it grows, we’re sure you’ll be gathering seeds for future years. (Those neighbors you share your Tatume with might be clamoring for some seeds as well!)

5. Tatume squash tastes great! We have employees who stand by their claims that Tatume squash tastes even better than zuchinni! Sound outrageous? There is no other way to find out for sure than tasting it yourself; and there’s no better way to taste the squash than plucking it fresh from your own home-grown vine!

6. Tatume squash can be harvested both as a “summer squash” or “winter squash”. Most squash is harvested as an “either/or” in these categories. Summer squash have tender outer skin and are best harvested in their immature stage. Winter squash has a thick outer skin and are left to fully mature, increasing sweetness to their inner flesh. Tatume pulls double duty and can be harvested either way (Most think harvesting as a summer squash is best, when it’s the size of a baseball). 

7. Tatume squash is cute! Ok, maybe some don’t consider cuteness a reason, but we do! Tatume is a round/oblate, striped green squash that resembles a tiny watermelon, or immature pumpkin. What’s cuter than a baseball-sized squash? It even has a cute nickname. ‘Calabacita’ means “little pumpkin”. 

USDA certified organically grown Tatume squash, here at Rainbow Gardens NOW!

Lots of blooms means lots of squash! Check under foliage often, this squash grows fast!

If any of these amazing reasons for trying Tatume squash sound great to you, this is the weekend to come on in to Rainbow Gardens for your transplants. Once the word is out, and it is now, these vigorously growing, borer-resistant, and highly productive squash plants will fly out the nursery doors. Come get your Tatume today!

~The Happy Gardener


For more info on Tatume, see the following links:

Aggie Horticulture: Tatume

Texas Gardener: Tatume