Costata Romanesco zucchini

I mentioned this variety in a current topic about trellising squash, but I think it worthy of mention to a wider audience because it seems to be so much more productive than other zucchini I’ve grown in recent years- they tend to die young from borers and possible cucumber wilt- bearing fruit for only a couple of weeks.

It is an Italian heirloom known both for its exceptional flavor and disease resistance. Comments about it I read when searching info suggested it was less productive than modern hybrids, but 2 fruit a day from a single plant is still more than I need for my family. I think it is typically productive, really. It just takes up more space- partially because it keeps growing long after other are dead.

Based on a single season, though.


I find they need to be really kept on top of. The fruit gets enormous much faster than other zucchini types.

Have you noticed any particular resistance to squash bugs?

The star shape makes them a bit easier to spot. My one plant already has a 12’ x 12’ spread with 2 months to go!

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Interesting, so are these more vining than regular zukes? It looks like a longer internodal distance from the photo above, so maybe it is like a short vine. That would be nice to make it easier to get it to root away from the base, but of course it sounds like it takes up a lot of area.

I got these for the first time this year for their prolific male flowers. I use them to make stuffed fried zucchini flowers… Superb variety for flowers and fruit. No need to trelis, just dig them deeper when starting and throw some soil around the main stem to stabilize the plant. Mine are still going gangbusters since beginning of July and no sign of slowing yet.

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More vining than crookneck, less vining than delicata. It’s a bush that spreads!

My wife was amazed that there was no quality drop off from average to a size we usually would just throw away. That get big without getting foamy.


What do you stuff your zucchini flowers with?

The original family recipe for centuries has been mozzarella and 1 anchovy filet. Prosciutto and mozzarella was sometimes used as well. You can really stuff them with anything. Lately I started stuffing them with 50-50 goat cheese-ricotta cheese, lemon zest and basil. My family went nuts over it.


Do you serve them with a sauce or plain. This citrus sounds delicious!

I serve them right out of the frying pan and sprinkle them with a little salt while they’re still hot. I make them with a super-cold beer batter to ensure they come out nice and crispy. My drooling family barely has the patience to wait enough not to burn their upper palate and tongue to wolf these down.

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Ok, please write down the recipe under the fruit in the kitchen category please! Can’t wait to make them.

According to Carol Deppe they are also one of the best if not the best for dehydrating in slices… That was why I got seeds to plant this year. Of course with our weather everything was late getting in and then suddenly it was full summer… so my poor little plants are struggling. Next year I will try to start them earlier