I had a gardener ask how she could tell when a Patty Pan squash, a type of summer squash, was ready to be picked.
The best indication a squash is ready to be picked is when the color changes from green to golden yellow AND the fruit is between 2 and 4 inches across. They can grow almost twice that size, but they get tough. Better to pick them small and enjoy the delicate, buttery flavor.
Not sure you know this vegetable? Patty pan squash (Cucurbita pepo) is a small flattened round squash often with defined scalloped edges. They can be prepared many ways including roasted, sautéed, and stuffed. And, they are delicious.