Carl Hunt’s weekly compost donation is responsible for three plants and about 30 butternut squashes this spring and early summer.  And, seeds from one of the 3o squashes has this fall produced 36 plants that may in turn produce 360 butternut squashes in our fall garden at the Garland Community Garden


Seeds Are the Basic Building Block for all Life and the Garden is the best place to learn and appreciate their value. 

What we do matters very much and our actions, like planted seeds, often grow larger than we may ever realize.  Sometimes, however, we are lucky enough to see the influence of another and tell them of our appreciation.  Today was such a day for me.

Carl Hunt has been coming down to the Garland Community once a week for at least the past three years to bring his weekly spent vegetables and coffee grounds for our compost.  It’s a  small amount.  Most would not bother. 

Then one day last spring several of us noticed what we thought was a pumpkin vine growing out of the compost box where Carl deposits his compost.  Several of us took the sprouts and transplanted them elsewhere in the garden.  I believe there were three vines in all, but I kept track of one of the vine’s produce.  From that one vine I counted 10 butternut squashes.  There may have been more, but there were at least 10 from that one vine.

During the first week in September, I planted some seeds from one of these squashes from that vine.  Thirty-six plants germinated.  I have transplanted 10 of these to various beds in the garden and will thin out about 10 more from the 26 remaining.  If all 36 plants live and produce 10 squashes each, that will be a total of 360 squashes from the seed of one squash that originated from Carl’s compost.

Today I just happened to be in the garden watering when Carl came down with the weekly compost from his kitchen.  I asked him if he ate butternut squash and thus brought the rinds and seeds with his compost to the garden. He told me that indeed he often purchased butternut squash from Whole Foods and brought their remains to the garden.

I told him the Butternut Squash story;  His compost has literally given our garden 30 butternut squashes and now 36 butternut squash plants that have the very real potential of yielding 360 more butternut squashes. 



Butternut squash (Cucurbita moschata), known in Australia and New Zealand as butternut pumpkin or gramma, is a type of pumpkin or winter squash that grows on a vine. It has a sweet, nutty taste similar to that of a pumpkin. It has tan-yellow skin and orange fleshy pulp with a compartment of seeds in the blossom end. When ripe, it turns increasingly deep orange, and becomes sweeter and richer.

Yes, seeds and people are powerful forces! Multiply 360 squashes times 2 cups  (average yield from one squash) and you get 720 servings of the following nutrition:

One cup = 82 calories; 22 grams of carbs; 2 grams protein; 457% daily requirement for Vitamin A [Vitamin A is essential for regulating cell growth, eye health, bone health, and immune function]; 52% daily requirement for Vitamin C.


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