As with most fruits and vegetables, timing is essential when planting zucchini. You can start by putting in a seed in a peat pot 30 days prior to the final frost. This allows you to set the pot beneath the ground without upsetting the roots.
Preparing the Soil
Don’t plant any until the thermometer reads at least 65 F. These must also be planted in a mound. Just shape the soil like a mound. Add some decomposed manure and make it 2 ft in diameter. If you’re making more than one mound, put 3 ft of space between each one.
That is the minimum space.
There should be no more than five plants per mound. As you start planting zucchini, provide at least six inches of space for each plant.
Watering and Caring
Water the mounds at least once a week. The watering needs to be
deep, but keep the leaves dry. If the leaves get soaked they’ll be susceptible to disease. As the plants grow, you should remove the weak ones. Usually only two plants should remain for every mound.
Cultivating the soil will help keep the weeds away. You can also use stakes so the zucchini can flourish off the ground. Eventually the plants will grow tall enough to make a shade. This will be enough to prevent weeds from appearing.
Mulching is also necessary when planting zucchini. Hay is the best choice, and this will keep the fruits fresh and disease free.
The most common insect pest is the Cucumber Beetle (it’s either striped or spotted). They consume the leaves and also spread sickness from one plant to another. The Vine Borer feasts on the vine itself.
An insecticide can keep these pests away. When buying insecticides, shop only in the reputable stores. A lot of the cheaper ones may not be healthy for the plant or you for that matter.
Zucchinis are ripe for the picking when they reach six inches in length. If it grows much longer the fruit will be bitter and hard. As a rule, the smaller ones taste better.
Tips and Warnings
Space each plant out as much as possible, especially when you’re planting zucchini by the bunch. Their vines can get entangled. They might strangle each other and cause problems. For the best product possible, the garden should have plenty of sunshine and good air flow.
You can grow the vines around a fence if space is restricted. A garden lattice will make the zucchini grow in a vertical manner. You should also keep the zucchini away from smaller plants because these might get overrun. Aside from the insecticides, watering will also keep the pests away.
Sometimes the zucchini takes a while to grow. You just need to be a little patient. Among the telltale signs are the proliferation of leaves and male flowers.
Not only are they healthy, but planting zucchini will let you cross breed them with pumpkin. This opens up a lot of possibilities in terms of making recipes and meals.