Dwarf Zuccini Needs Help

Discussion in 'HortForum' started by Constance, Jul 3, 2004.

  1. Constance

    Constance Member

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    Ladysmith, BC
    I've planted 3 squashes this summer - a zuccini, a yellow crookneck and pumpkin. All of them are very slow growing,almost dwarf. I added organic steer manure before planing and they are getting regular watering. Any ideas what I need to add to the soil?
  2. HortLine

    HortLine Active Member 10 Years

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    Vancouver, BC
    Dear Constance.
    Squash seems to grow in most soils, but some added compost will be helpful as these
    grow well in organic soils. The soil should be well drained & have a pH of 5.8 to 7.0.
    Plant in full sun. Mound soil up into a hill (this helps to warm up the soil) & plant three
    seeds per hill. Average distance between hills to be about 4 feet. In cool weather
    cover small plants with a cloche. Sprinkle a band of basic fertilizer, ie., 6-8-6 around
    each plant, when sowing seeds or transplants. Side-dress with fertilizer after 6 weeks.
    These vegetables are heavy feeders & will grow very well in a compost pile from kitchen refuse. Squash plants hybridize freely & such results will be a surprise & it will be
    impossible to know which plants were the parents.
    Note: Hill Planting- adds warmth & good drainage. Even in good garden soil, work an
    extra shovelful of compost or well-aged manure into each 1', 2'-3' wide hill at
    planting time. Or to really baby your crop, dig a l' deep hole, fill it with compost
    or aged manure, & build the planting hill on top.
    You can intersperse squash with corn, so the vines can use the cornstalks as
    climbing poles. If you have limited space - tie three long poles together at top
    & spread the legs into a tripod; plant seed at the base of each pole. Also may be
    grown on fences & well supported growing nets.
    Try not to water seeds until they have germinated. Once germinated water as
    PUMPKINS: Once the plant has set one good fruit, remove all the others so that
    the vine is only supporting that one fruit. See plant is never under stress from
    nutrients or water. Once the fruit is set, start a fertilizing program of 20-20-20,
    at half-strength & do so once a week. Suggest alternation with another fertilizer
    such as 6-8-6
    Good luck & hope this information is helpful.

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