How to grow Chayote Squash Vines

I’m actually standing on my neighbor’s property here, on the property line. Actually on his property in the property line is the wood there and we have some things planted, some tomatoes on an earlier segment on his property that he’s allowing us to a plant and share the harvest. Then over here we did we made a raised bed and my soil level’s a bit higher than his so we put a small retaining wall and what we did was we, I got some what trellis material which was actually in the dumpster outside the local drugstore they were remodeling and they were throwing this store display rack out.

But guess what, it’s like two inch by two inch spacing and it’ll work perfect for trellis. So we did was, we basically screwed it in to the existing fence at two points and then we set the rebar into the ground to secure it and we use some tie wraps, plastic zip ties to secure it upright.  You can see over here if we go over here, we’ve already planted it out. I had these are going in the greenhouse.

This is actually called chayote squash. If you look in the store you’ll never see Chayote squash seeds for sale that’s because the fruit in itself is the seed. So what you’re doing is you will go to an Asian market or Mexican market where they often sell Chayote. You will find one that’s starting to split much like an avocado pit will split. The seed inside the chayote will split and send out a little chute and roots out of the chayote and you could easily see this.

There’ll be a crack near the top of the fruit were normally the stem would go in and you will see the roots coming out as well as the leaves coming out. Let’s see. They like a tropical climate. And you could see we have this vining up here and we have some clips on. They will definitely extend out their own little, little coils and start wrapping around things very easily. We took this out the greenhouse so we just used some clips to clip them up for now. But we’ll come back later and will see this whole trellis filled with chayote vines.  Now the reason I’m growing the vines actually is my friend in Hawaii, Ryan introduced me to the chayote plant and he grows it actually for the fruit.

So in Hawaii the chayote grows year around and will fruit, flour and grow in he’ll sell the fruit to his local health food store. But the interesting thing is that he told me is that what’s edible on this plant and quite good raw is the tips so let me find a good tip here. So this is the tip here the end of the where the growth is ending. The tip there is you just snap it off so then I just snapped off the tip there, I see a bad leaf that I’m probably going to peel before I actually eat it. So I just peeled that off. And this will tip here is quite edible and quite good. The benefit is once you snap off the tip basically the plant will y off and make actually two more.  It’ll make a lot more tips. So tips are actually quite good.

Also this year I started them earlier in the season, so hopefully I’ll get a full growing season and maybe they will also go to fruit too. The fruit by the way can be eaten raw. Not quite my favorite but, definitely something unique and cool to be growing chayote squash.  We’ll go around to the other side of the house and I’ll show you some more established chayote that I have growing in a more shady location. This is a more sunny location so maybe it’ll induce the fruiting and growing more quickly.  Here you are seeing big chayote squash leaves climbing up a bamboo the trellis on the side of the house here actually. You could see the chayote squash it starts all the way down here and it’s next to my extra gas meter. We have some this cool variegated sorrel growing here, quite good as well. Looks really cool.

But the chayote squash if we move some plants back here, well you can’t really quite see the fruit. The fruit actually rots, the fruit was down there but the fruit actually rots and then the plant will actually take its place. But this vine actually goes up and goes up and goes up and goes up. We had actually one over wintered in the ground, the leaves didn’t make it, but the root did stay alive. And you could see it, grow, it goes all the way up to the ceiling there, top of my house. We probably need to clip that back and get it to divide and weed it back down before it gets too high.  But these things really fast, so here’s another example of the tip here. And the tip, I’m just going to snap that off and you can eat that tip is really good raw, great for salads.

So chayote squash, excellent and delicious. It’s deftly a vining plant need somewhere pretty tall to grow. Enjoy your chayote. It does come in a couple of different varieties. They have green chayote then they have spiny Chayote and they’ll have like a white chayote. I only ever got one white chayote that actually did sprout. But I find a lot of spiny and light green chayotes sprouting.  So the best thing to do is in the store don’t buy one that’s not spreading if you want to sprout it and grow because I’m not sure that it actually will sprout but there’s oftentimes I’ll go through the whole stack of produce in the store and I will find one that is already sprouting. So find one that’s sprouting, put in the ground, but it in some dirt.  Why don’t we go in back in the green house and we’ll show you how to start them. Alright we’re in the greenhouse and let’s see here so here’s some chayote actually that I actually have buried this is spiny chayote. You could see basically it’s the start of the plant or the little stem is actually coming out.

This is the fruit, part the fruit you can see coming up is just basically buried and this is spiny chayote. Here’s another one here. You kind of see the fruit starting to split open actually right here and it starts to sprout actually. So if we go down one level here you can see some more examples of this is just regular chayote so you could actually see the way we played this one is a fruit was much more exposed. We left actually half the fruit out of the pot here. You can see here the stem of the plant grows out of the fruit literally in the roots grow down in the soil so this just starts to go and vine up. Actually at this point this one is ready to be transplanted out now if you needed to do that. I have a couple other ones going in here. Here’s another really good example actually what’ll happen is the fruit will actually just start to rot. Because the seed is what’s growing the fruit is just actually carrier for the seed that provides the nutrition for the seed to grow.

But once the seed is growing, the fruits no longer needed and actually will just rot out. Bugs will eat it and it just kind of gets all funky. But this one is a probably ready to go in the ground too. Chayote squash definitely. Tips are edible raw, maybe the leaves too if you want to cook them up. But I’m just kind of growing them for fun. They grow really fast they’ll fill in a trellis really nice. Alright so grow Chayote squash.

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