Growing zucchini (Cucurbita pepo
) in a garden is very popular. This is because planting zucchini is easy and a zucchini plant can produce large amounts of delicious squash. Let’s take a look at how to plant zucchini and grow zucchini squash in your garden.
How to Plant Zucchini
When planting zucchini, you can plant them either as individual plants or grouped on hills. How you grow zucchini squash is up to you, based on how many zucchini plants you intend to grow and how much room you have to grow them.
Individual Zucchini Plants
After the chance of frost has passed, plant 2-3 seeds 36 inches apart. The seeds should be planted about an inch deep. Thin to one plant per spot once the seeds have sprouted and have grown their first set of true leaves.
Zucchini Plants on a Hill
After the chance of frost has passed, mound up soil about 6 – 12 inches high and 12 – 24 inches wide. On the top of the hill, in a circle, plant 4 – 5 zucchini seeds. Thin the seedlings down to 2 – 3 per hill once the seedlings have their first set of true leaves.
You can also start zucchini indoors in order to get a head start on the season. Start zucchini seeds indoors 4 – 6 weeks before the last from date and plant out in the garden after all chances of frost have passed.
Information on Growing Zucchini
Once seedlings are established, mulch around the plants. Mulching helps to keep the ground temperature stable and also helps the soil retain water. These two things will help the zucchini plant have an earlier and larger crop.
Make sure that your zucchini plants get at least 2 inches of water a week. If you do not receive enough rainfall to do this, supplement with manual watering. Use a soaker hose or other method to water the plants below their leaves. Watering using a sprinkler can cause the zucchini plants to develop powdery mildew.
Harvest zucchini squash when the fruits are small. This will result in a more tender and flavorful squash.
Growing zucchini in your garden is fun and easy. Now that you know how to plant zucchini and some tips on growing it well, you can grow zucchini squash in your garden with ease.
The zucchini plant is one of the most common vegetables grown in the home garden. One of the reasons is because it is relatively easy to grow. But just because it is easy to grow does not mean that the zucchini is without its problems. Many people have problems growing zucchini. Let’s take a look at a few of these problems and how to fix them.
Zucchini Pests & Insects
One of the most common zucchini problems is with zucchini pests. The zucchini plant basically looks like a buffet table to a great many insects and bugs. Some common zucchini pests include:
Most zucchini pests can be controlled with regular applications of insecticidal soap or pesticides. Since these different pests can affect the zucchini plant at different times in the growing cycle, it is best to start a pest control regimen as soon as the zucchini plant is in the ground to avoid these pest problems on growing zucchini.
A zucchini plant is also susceptible to a wide variety of diseases. These include zucchini powdery mildew, bacterial wilt, downy mildew, yellow mosaic virus, and botrytis blight.
Once the zucchini plant is infected with any of these disease problems, it is nearly always fatal to the zucchini plant. So, the best way to fix disease problems on growing zucchini is to just make sure that the zucchini plant does not get them in the first place.
This can be done mostly through appropriate care of the zucchini plant. Making sure that the plant gets plenty of sun, the right about of water every week, avoiding top watering and good air flow through proper spacing of plants will go a long way towards helping the plant fend off many of these diseases. Also, keeping common zucchini pests away from the plant will help curb the diseases that these insects often carry with them.
Zucchini Blossoms Falling Off Plant
While many people think that their zucchini has a problem because the blossoms are mysteriously falling off the plant, this is actually not the case. This is very normal for zucchini plants and is part of its development process. Read this article for more information about why do zucchini blossoms fall off the plant.
The Ends of the Zucchini Rot or Get Soft
If the ends of your zucchini get soft before they are fully grown, this is caused by Squash Blossom End Rot and is a symptom of a calcium deficiency. Read this article on “Squash Blossom End Rot Causes And Treatment” for more information.