Zucchetta Serpent of Sicily/Cucuzza (146-43)

$4.50
SKU:
146-43
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Description

Description

Zucchetta Serpente di Sicilia - Serpent of Sicily. Sometimes called cucuzze or gagootza. It is actually a gourd (it has white flowers rather than yellow like squash), but is grown and eaten like a summer squash. Much favored by people from Southern Italy. Fruit can grow up to three feet long, but tastes best when picked young, no more than 12 inches. Vigorous grower with long vines so leave plenty of room. Vines can easily run 25 feet; does well on a terrace or pergola. Pinch the growing tips of the vines and saute them in olive oil; they are very tasty that way.

Zucchetta is a hot weather crop, so don't plant before the soil has warmed. Because the seeds are so hard, germination can take as long as four to six weeks. To speed germination, scarify the seeds before planting: The easiest way to scarify is to rub the seeds on coarse sand paper, just enough to weaken the seed coat without damaging the interior part of the seed. Then soak the seeds for 24 hours to further soften the seed coat. Click here for more details on scarification.

Plant seeds in hills about six feet apart, four seeds per hill and thin to two or three plants. Germination of scarified seeds occurs in about 10-14 days. About 70-75 days from germination until fruiting. 6 gram packet; approximately 30-40 seeds.

 

Reviews

Reviews (5)

Pat 17th Jul 2019

Serpent of Sicily

I enjoy all your squash, but the one I have the most fun with is Zuchetta Serpent of Sicily / Cucuzza. They are showy, abundant and delicious. It starts with finding a sunny spot where I can build a trellis or arbor for these aggressive climbers to grow. I don’t bother to scrape the seed shells or soak the seeds. They germinate just fine if the soil is wet and warm. I fill a good size hole with organic leaf compost and plant 3-4 seeds in each spot. When seeds germinate I train them to grow on the trellis or arbor, although they manage just fine on their own. One important and delicious element is to prune the side growing tips of the vine and sauté them in olive oil. They are delicious and keeps the vine from getting overly bushy. Otherwise, I pick most of the cucuzza when it is 12-18 inches long. My favorite preparation is sautéed with with onion, garlic and tomato sauce, and eaten with some homemade crusty bread. I do leave a couple of cucuzza on the vine, letting them grow to 3-4 feet. They become the center of attention in the neighborhood.

davide cuccia 23rd Jul 2017

Meravigliosa!

Being part-Sicilian I've always enjoyed cucuzza and a dish made by my cousins in Sicily ... tenerumi! Your seeds grow faster than any other seeds I've tried in the past ... my plants are out of control! I'm very very happy and will continue to buy from you every year! Grazie mille! davide!

Additional Info

Additional Info

SKU:
146-43

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