Plant This Butternut Squash Next Summer


Are you looking for a crop that is perfect for garden-to-table planning? Perfect for small garden spaces? How about a veggie that would be really cute to serve to guests AND tastes delicious? I’m very excited for this mini-series on the blog. It’s brand new, but I basically share my must-have, return garden favorites that translate easily into delicious meals for you and your family—it’s called “Plant This.”

If I’m being honest, the first crop for my Plant This series should have been sungold tomatoes. If you haven’t grown them, make a note right now to plant them in your Summer garden because they are one of those tomatoes that I have tried to “find better” and just can’t. You’ll also love them in The Ultimate Creamy Cherry Tomato Pasta Dish.  Okay, now onto the actual subject of today’s post: butternut squash.

A Butternut Squash for Small Gardens

Let me introduce you to ‘Butterscotch PMR’ an organic, F1 butternut squash that I purchased from Johnny’s Selected Seeds last year. It’s a small butternut, that is supposed to grow to 1-2 lb, about 6-8″ long. Due to growing conditions, mine were even smaller! The more compact vines can be planted closer together and are a great option for small gardens with little space for sprawling plants. 

The ‘butterscotch pmr’ butternuts were adorable, albeit small. At first I was worried about the flavor, but they were so delicious roasted and much easier to prepare due to their size.

Here’s the description from the Johnny’s Seeds website:

Sweet, rich, complex flavor. The perfect size for dinner (no leftovers) and ideal for growers selling at farmers’ markets and filling CSA boxes. Matures early at 1–2 lb., with no curing needed before it can be enjoyed. Stores up to 3 months after harvest. Short vines. Intermediate resistance to powdery mildew. Our thanks to Cornell University for their help in developing this variety. NOTE: If growing for the 1-lb size, we recommend giving each plant only 6 sq.ft. of space. AAS Winner. USDA Certified Organic

My Growing Experience

As you know, I try a lot of different varieties in my garden which often means I have to stagger my planting dates over the whole Summer because I don’t have unlimited space. These ‘Butterscotch PMR” butternut squashes were actually part of my very last planting of Winter squashes. I was definitely pushing the limits of my gardening zone and didn’t know what to expect.

The couple seedlings I had were transplanted into the garden on August 11th and I was able to harvest four adorable butternuts.  Again, planting and growing conditions were not ideal. It was late in the season, we had colder night temps, and I actually planted them only a foot apart! Therefore, I’m pretty surprised I got a harvest at all. Next year though, these will be transplanted as soon as it’s hot and succession sown throughout the Summer.

If you are curious how I amend my garden beds before transplanting seedlings, you can check out How to Amend Your Garden Organically. I didn’t do any special garden amendments for these squashes because I was really in a rush to get them in the ground.

I’m recommending you make hasselback roasted butternut squash with these beauties. Instructions for the recipe below!

Make Hasselback Roasted Butternut Squash

This is only my opinion, but the BEST way to use these beauties is roasted, hasselback style with some butter. The first time I made them this way I just ate them with leftover rice (with soy sauce) for lunch and it hit the spot! What makes the butterscotch squash so perfect for this type of recipe is 1) their size and 2) their flavor.

Fun fact: Sam is part Swedish. You might have heard of “hasselback potatoes” or “hasselbackspotatis” in Swedish. The name of this type of preparation of potatoes, squash, etc. comes from the Swedish restaurant, Hasselbraken, where it was created and served!

Here’s a quick rundown of how I made these:

STEP 1 Prep The Butternut Squash & Preheat the Oven

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F

Start by chopping off the blossom and top ends.

Using a vegetable peeler, peel the skin of each squash. You can view some pictures of each step below.

Cut the squashes in half lengthwise.

Scoop out the seeds.

STEP 2 Create the small, hasselback cuts

Take one squash half and lay it down (flat side down).

Place a chopstick on each side to prevent you from cutting all the way through the squash.

Make cuts (approximately 1/8″ or smaller) along the whole length of the squash.

Repeat for all the squash halves.

Place your prepared squash halves on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

STEP 3 Brush with rosemary butter

Use your fingers to kind of fan out the squash cuts, as this helps the butter seep into the layers.

Take a mixture of melted butter (I use salted butter) and finely chopped rosemary and brush it over each.

*A note on rosemary: this herb is one of the 5 Herbs I Recommend Buying From a Nursery. It thrives on very little water and is very happy in our Southern California climate. Rosemary is also very easy to propagate so you can make your own plants for free. Get that tutorial >>>>HERE.

STEP 4 Sprinkle Sugar & Salt 

Take a little brown sugar and sprinkle it on top of each squash.

Sprinkle some kosher salt too.

STEP 5 Roast squash halves until fully cooked.

Roast at 425 degrees F.

I can easily pierce them with a fork when done. My small halves took 25 minutes.

If you’d like more color on your squash, you can broil them quickly for about 5 minutes at the end. Don’t walk away! They can easily burn.

Sprinkled with kosher salt, brown sugar, rosemary, and smothered with butter. Ready for roasting.


My Summer 2022 garden will definitely be including these sweet butternuts as I am always looking for ways to grow more food and save space. For more space saving ideas, check out My Vertical Gardening Guide as I have grown many crops vertically in my garden to save space!

Meet Randi

Urban gardening is my jam. I’m Randi, California girl who obsessively gardens to grow food and flowers around my urban home. Seasonal, simple living is what inspires me~ I hope it will inspire you too. Join me in crafting a life and home connected to the garden Read More>>>>

For Growers & Gardeners from High Mowing Organic Seeds