Greetings, my fellow Harvest Freshers™.

My original blog idea was going to be my tour de force; I was going to tackle and solve the ol’ pineapple on pizza debate. I spent weeks researching and I contacted Nobel Prize-winning mathematicians and NASA scientists to weigh in on the matter. After compiling all the data, the conclusion was a startling revelation not only on personal pizza preferences but also solved the age-old question: “What is the meaning of life?”.

Pineapple on Pizza

 …But we’re not going to talk about that today. As I was about to sit down and type it out, the undead woman who lives in the walls of my house was a bit noisier than usual, which made it impossible for me to concentrate. I know what you’re thinking, “Mike, you have an undead woman living in the walls of your house?” Yep. She has squatter rights so there’s not much I can do about it.


When things aren’t too raucous, I like to play word games. I’m a big fan of anagrams, palindromes, and isograms. Did you know that if you rearrange the letters of my name, Michael Skiba, it spells out [REDACTED]? While we’re on the subject, what are some palindromes in the produce world? (A palindrome is a word that is spelled the same, frontwards and backward i.e., radar and tacocat) As it turns out, I can only seem to identify one palindrome: Opo as in Opo Squash, better known as Cucuzza Squash in the Fresh Harvest store (for any of you who were lucky enough to snag one). I doubt any of you are too familiar with this vegetable, so I will make this post legit and dish out some fun facts.
Cucuzza in situ

10 5 Facts About Cucuzza Squash That May One Day Save Your Life (maybe…. probably not)

  1. Just as nearly every leafy vegetable is a descendant of an ugly-looking leafy broccoli, Cucuzza is part of the family of cucumbers, squash, and melons that all share a similar ancestry.



  1. The earliest record of Cucuzza squash was 6,000 ce in western China. This squash slowly migrated to Africa and then is presumed to have floated across the Atlantic Ocean to what is now known as Brazil.
  2. Cucuzza is a subspecies of the bottle gourd which has several well-known ‘sister’ varieties such as Snake gourds, Goose-neck gourds, and Fuzzy squash.
A Cucuzza Squash on it’s Way to Brazil

  1. Cucuzzas need to be harvested when they are green. If they are left to ripen, they will turn yellow and become severely bitter in flavor.
  2. Due to its shared ancestry with cucumbers, the flavor of the Cucuzza squash is reported to be a blend of cucumber and summer squash.



Use this newfound knowledge to impress your friends and family. I can see the conversation going something like this…

Friend: What are some examples of palindromes?

You: How about Opo as in Opo squash, better known as Cucuzza squash

Friend: What is Cucuzza squash?

You: Here are some facts about Cucuzza squash

Friend: Wow. You should be President.