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plant pictureSome really good traditional varieties do still exist, and these are the best we have found.
(NB: "Summer squash" are picked young and used just like courgettes but are different shapes & colours.)

A note about plant sizes, that not everyone realises:
Some are big sprawling vines, others are smaller bushes.
But in general you get a set amount of produce per square foot of plant,
so there's no free lunch (or dinner) - if you want loads of courgettes
you need to plant up several square yards of plants.

We would normally grow about 5 or 6 plants for our own use, which is why we give you at least 10 seeds.
But then, we like courgettes a lot, so you might only want to grow 3 or 4.

TIP: Mice love courgette seed, and slugs love the baby plants. The seed will also germinate best with a bit of heat,
so we recommend sowing indoors in small pots, then planting out when they have 3 true leaves. Don't rush to sow - often
plants that go out slightly later will catch up and do much better than earlier plantings battered by spring storms.

plant pictureTrieste White Cousa Courgette
Trieste White is a Cousa-type courgette from the Middle East.

The bushes are very quick growing and make short, chubby, slightly bulbous white courgettes.  (Well, really a very, very pale green rather than ‘white’.)

We prefer Cousa courgettes like this one, as they fruit earlier and more heavily than normal courgettes, and the fruit stay tender to a greater size.

Early, high production , particularly good flavour and texture

Order CoTW - 14 seed £


plant picture'Verde di Italia' Pale Green Ribbed Courgette

This is a good early courgette which makes lots of pale green fruit.

They have very gentle ridges along their length in the style of the courgettes grown in the North of Italy. We like them because their flesh is very tender and particularly finely-flavoured.

Order CoVi - 14 seed £


plant picture

'Verde di Milano' Dark Green Dwarf Bush Courgette

This is a small bush (not a vine), making medium-sized very dark green (almost black) courgettes.

Because it is smaller plant it is a good choice for those of you with a tiny plot ( and also for all those with a huge plot who are just always hopelessly over-optimistic about how many different things can be squeezed in!)

We like to eat our courgettes picked small and fried with garlic - delicious.

Order CoVM - 14 seed £


plant picture 'Striato d'Napoli' Courgette
A good early courgette from Italy. Big bushy plants giving lots of long, pretty fruit with alternating light and dark green stripes.

Perfectly smooth and round in cross-section, and the flesh doesn't go as 'soft' when cooked as other courgettes do. We like it a lot: very productive, but it doesn't sprawl too much, so it's a good choice if you have a small plot.

Early & stripey. Large bush but not too sprawling!

Order CoSN - 14 seed £


plant picture 'Tondo di Piacenza' Courgette
An early courgette which is almost perfectly spherical. Very productive, with pretty fruits which look good on the plant and on the plate.

Most of the round courgettes available are very pale , but these are a nice glossy dark green colour, which helps them absorb a bit more heat. Definitely worth a try if you fancy something a little bit different.

Kate would like to point out that we have actually found one small flaw with these. Because they're round, if you try to carry a huge armful all at once, it's very easy to lose control and end up with them rolling away in all directions! The bushes are also very big and sprawling - so better for the larger plot - but then they make an awful lot of courgettes.

Dark green, round courgette

Order CoTP - 14 seed £


plant picture 'Burpees Golden Zucchini' - Yellow Courgette NEW
This yellow courgette was selected by Oved Schifriss in the 1940s and was introduced to home gardeners by the "W. Atlee Burpee & Co" seed house.

The bushes are quite compact, producing large numbers of bright yellow courgettes.

Good flavour. Best picked 8-10 inches long.

Order CoGZ - 14 seed £



Summer squash are grown and cooked just like courgettes. They have a slightly nuttier flavour, and offer a whole new range of different shapes & colours.

To avoid any confusion, just as with courgettes, you should pick these plants regularly, and pick all these squash when they are small, only a couple of inches across. The plants rapidly make more! (Otherwise you will end up with - for example - the patty-pan equivalent of a marrow!)

plant picture 'Pattison Blanc' Patty Pan Squash
Patty-pan squash are flattened, saucer-shaped courgettes.

This old French heirloom produces white saucer-shaped fruit, which are cut when young (about 3 inches across) and cooked or fried just like a courgette.

The flavour is a little richer and more substantial than courgettes, with a slight 'nutty' taste.

Very popular each year, they can be quite prolific indeed in a good summer.

Saucer-shaped white courgette!

Order SSPB - 14 seed £


plant picture 'Bennings Green Tint'
This is one of the most beautiful varieties of Patty Pan squash there is, and it dates from around 1900 or a little earlier.

The bushes are quite vigorous and make uniform saucer-shaped fruits with scalloped edges and pale-green, fine-textured flesh of good flavor. Harvest them when about 2- 3 inches across, and the plant will make lots more.

Heirloom pale green variety.

Order SSBe - 12 seed £


plant picture'Summer Crookneck' summer squash
This is an amazing knobbly yellow squash, with bulbous fruit and a curved neck (hence the name).

Although botanically a 'squash' it is always picked early, sliced whole, & used just like a courgette - with a great nutty flavour.

We think that it is much tastier than courgettes though - firmer fleshed and better flavoured! It is a bit slower to get going though, as it does like some warmth, so we always grow both for good crops right through the season.

Always a favourite of ours

Order SSSC 12 seed £


"Hi, I just wanted to email to say how fantastic the crookneck squash are. The seeds grew into fantastic upright bushes that needed no support (leaving me room for other things) and the squash were fantastic roasted. I found they were about right when they reached about 5-6" and so beautiful. I'm afraid I was struggling to manage an allotment so didn't save the seed, so I've ordered more and will give it a go this year." - Andrea


Saving Courgette & Summer Squash Seed:

plant pictureplant pictureplant pictureplant pictureplant pictureplant pictureplant picture

It is very easy to save your own courgette seed, but you really do have to do it properly.

For seed production, you really must pollinate the flowers by hand,
otherwise they will cross with all the other squash and pumpkins,
giving tasteless watery mongrels that are no good to eat.

The rubber bands hold the flowers shut so the bees can't get in and cross-pollinate them before you get there.

Don't be daunted! It only takes a few minutes to do this properly, and you'll get great seed.

Basic seed-saving instructions are included with your seeds, so you can do this yourself.
There are more detailed home-seed saving guides (printable) over to the left of this page,
in the box titled 'SeedSaving', with sheets on drying and storing your seed too.
And of course, seed-saving is only possible because these are all real, non-hybrid varieties.