Delicata SquashThe oblong delicata squash, available in the fall, has a pale yellow skin with yellow or green markings. It is 5-9 inches in length. Photo courtesy of





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MELISSA HOM is an editorial intern at THE NIBBLE.



June 2006
Updated October 2008

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Vegetables

Squash Glossary

Types Of Squash For Summer, Winter And Year-Round

Page 6: Hubbard Squash & Other Squash Types Beginning With D To J

This is Page 6 of an eight-page glossary featuring different types of squash. Here, squash types beginning with D to J include unusual squash types, the best-known of which is the hubbard. More rare varieties include the delicata, eight-ball, gold nugget and green-striped cushaw. Click here to recommend a variety we haven’t included. Click on the black links below to visit the other pages. See our more than 50 other food glossaries, each featuring a different favorite food.


Type Of Squash Get To Know Me

Decorative Squash

Decorative squash are edible winter squash with unusual shapes and/or markings that make attractive centerpieces and other household decor. They are also known as ornamental squash. Examples include the baby boo pumpkin, carnival squash, the calabash squash above, the delicata squash below, and the turban squash.

Turban Squash
Turban squash photo by Nathalie Dulex | SXC.

Delicata Squash or Sweet Potato Squash

The oblong delicata squash has lemon-colored skin streaked with green or orange. The meat is a cross between butternut squash and sweet potato, so much so that it is also called sweet potato squash. It is also known as Bohemian squash. (See additional photo at top of page.)

Available year-round, it is best late summer through early fall.
delicata squash

Eight-Ball Squash

The fattened, round eight-ball squash from California is a spherical hybrid of zucchini. Sharing the same dark, speckled green skin and plump insides, this squash can be prepared exactly the same way as zucchini. If your family doesn’t like zucchini, show them these eight-balls: They’re so much more fun!

Available during the warm months in California from spring until fall.
8 ball squash

Fairytale Pumpkin

A charming, flat-shaped squash with deep ribs. A large, flat (cheese-wheel-shaped) winter pumpkin, growing to 20 pounds. The mature pumpkin has an orange-brown rind; the flesh is deep orange, tender and sweet, making it delicious as well as ornamental option. The fairytale pumpkin is known in France (and often in the U.S.) as a musquee de Provence.

Pick these up at Nancy’s Ranch in Santa Clarita, California.

Gold Ball Squash

A newer variety hybrid of gold zucchini, gold ball squash are round and make a beautiful still life. Use as you would a zucchini or as a bowl: scoop out seeds; fill with your favorite dip or salad, or cook in halves, then scoop out a bowl and fill with other vegetables—perhaps dice butternut squash!

Gold Ball Squash
Gold ball squash, available at, are the size of baseballs.

Gold Nugget Squash

Akin to a hand-size pumpkin, this dull-skinned squash (the dull skin indicates maturity) is as deep orange inside as it is outside. Noted for its blander taste compared to other squashes, gold nugget squash lends adapts itself to a variety of seasonings.

Available year-round. The best season is late summer through early winter.
gold nugget

Gooseneck Squash

A winter squash similar to the calabash squash. But instead of the calabash’s bottleneck shape (see photo at top of page), the neck is naturally bent to resemble a goose’s neck.



A gourd is the hollow, dried shell of a fruit in the plant family Cucurbitaceae, to which squash belong. There are edible gourds (squash), and those non-edible varieties used as vessels, musical instruments and for decor. Gourds are believed to be the earliest plant domesticated by man, in Africa, where they were used as bowls and bottles (they are still used today to drink yerba maté in South America). The rattling dried seeds inside enable gourds to be used as percussion instruments; even today, gourds are used as resonating chambers on certain stringed instruments and drums, especially in the Caribbean.

Decorative Gourds.

Green-Striped Cushaw Squash

The cushaw is a white squash, mottled and striped with green and crookneck-shaped. Its yellow flesh is best suited for pies and fillings because it is slightly sweet, but thick and coarse. It tastes very much like a pumpkin, and could be an even better alternative.

Available late summer to the end of winter.
green striped cushaw

Hubbard Squash (Blue, Golden, Green, or Gray)

Large and bumpy like a misshapen teardrop, this squash is notable for its wart-covered exterior and its peach-colored flesh. Hubbard squash is generally uniform in color, although the gray variety has a dusty appearance. The flesh is moist, but is best prepared boiled or baked and then puréed. Longer cooking helps breakdown its fibrousness and evaporates some of the excess water.

Available year-round, but peak season is early fall throughout winter.
hubbard squash

Indian Bitter Melon

Resembling a bumpy cucumber, Indian Bitter Melon is much smaller than Chinese Bitter Melon, only 4 to 5 inches in length. The grooved yellow-green to dark-green skin holds a fibrous, seed-filled core. The lighter the color, the milder the taste. Its slightly sour flavor becomes quite bitter upon ripening. This bitter or quinine flavor is often combined with garlic or chile. It is used in soups, curries, stir-fry, or can be steamed and braised.

Available January through November.

Indian Bitter Melon
Indian bitter melon is available at

Italian Squash

See cucuzza squash.


Jarrahdale Pumpkin

See Australia blue squash.


Continue To Page 7: Squash Types Beginning With K To R

Go To Article Index Above


Lifestyle Direct, Inc. All rights reserved. The photos in our squash glossary are courtesy of Goebel Farms, Melissa’s, MorgueFile and Melissa Hom. Images are the copyright of their respective owners.