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Home>Vegetable Seeds>Squash, Winter
Sweet Meat Winter Squash
Gill Brother's 'Sweet Meat' winter squash.
Sweet Meat Winter Squash
Item Id: 3370231 review

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Sweet Meat Certified Naturally Grown Seed
 (Gill's Sweet Meat)
(Cucurbita maxima)

Gill Brothers 1947 Catalog Back110 days — This old variety has been a favorite in the Dunton family for generations. Introduced by the old Pacific Northwest regional seed house, Gill Brother's Seed Company of Portland, Oregon in 1947. Our seed stock is a family "hand-me-down" that traces its roots directly to Gill's.

This was a favorite variety of both of Mike Dunton's grandfathers. One of the pictures in the slide show above is of Mike's Grandpa Dunton, here on our farm, saving seed in 1977. Mike's mother's dad also faithfully provided space in his annual garden in the foothills of the Cascade Mountain Range near Colton, Oregon.

The vines are vigorous and require a lot of space. The fruits weigh ten pounds or more and are a bluish-gray color. Very hard shelled, the flesh is a deep orange color, thick, very sweet, dry and fine grained (stringless).

They keep many months after being harvested.  The 1947 Gill Brother's catalog stated that they, ". . . kept six squash in good edible condition from crop to crop." In a later paragraph, they return attention from the plant description back to its unusually long-keeping quality and, ". . . the fact that the flavor and sweetness increases with age for at least six months from harvest."

The fruit can be simply stored and baked or processed by canning or freezing. My mom bakes and freezes leftovers for reheating later. We also cut into cubes and freeze the raw meat in freezer bags for use in soups and other recipes. 'Sweet Meat' has a very sweet, fine texture and is excellent on its own, added to recipes, or even baked as pumpkin pie. Can you tell that it is a favorite of ours?

Each packet contains three grams, which is approximately 9 to 10 seeds.
Customer Reviews Average Rating review
Great keeper. Easy to grow.
Medium sized fruits (9 to 11+ lbs. each). Very easy to grow with thick rambling vines. Planted in a raised bed. Tough blue/gray skin helps prevent animal and insect damage. Thick orange flesh makes great soup and pies. Keeps very well. Lasted the longest in storage of all my winter squash. I used my last one on 4/30. Colorado has a fairly short growing season and variable weather; often cool at night even in summer. If we had more stable heat, I think it would have gotten sweeter. I may try growing with black plastic and maybe tents to keep them warmer to see if that will increase their sweetness. Will grow again.
Reviewed by: Sherri Baird from Aurora, CO. on 5/1/2017
may try again
Direct sowed into garden. Only one seed germinated, struggled then died at 5" tall. Insects really love this and contributed to its demise. My soil could have been the problem, although other squash did nicely. Will definitely try again, only start indoors with sterile potting mix.

VSC NOTES:Squash vines are voracious eaters so if you think that you have soil issues, improving your soil fertility is a great idea. Also, do keep in mind that squash need very warm to hot soil temperatures (77-95ºF) in order for germination to occur. Here is a link to more information - ~Mike
Reviewed by: Anne Holzinger from New Hampshire. on 8/17/2015
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