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Summer Squash

Botanical Name
Cucurbita pepo
Hardiness
Tender Annual
Height
1 to 3 feet
Width
2 to 4 feet
Flowers
Mid summer to late fall: yellow, females produce fruit, edible
Fruit
Zucchini, scallop, and constricted neck (straight or crookneck) types
Light
Full sun
Soil
Well-drained, organic
Planting & Care
  • Squash germinate best in warm soil temperatures of 70°F to 105°F
  • Begin sowing when the soil has warmed to at least 70°F and all danger of frost has passed. Plant 4 to 5 seeds per hill at a depth of 1 inch. Space hills 3 to 4 feet apart. Thin to 2 or 3 plants per hill.
  • When sowing in rows, plant seeds 1 inch deep, 4 inches apart in rows set 4 to 5 feet apart. Thin plants to 1 plant per every 1 to 2 feet.
  • Squash can be started indoors for an earlier harvest. Sow 3 to 4 seeds per pot and thin to 1 or 2 plants per container. Harden off before transplanting. Set plants out in the garden when the soil has adequately warmed and all danger of frost has passed. Space 1 to 2 feet apart.
  • Mulch the soil to suppress weeds and retain soil moisture
  • Mounding some soil around the base of the plants will help discourage squash borers from laying eggs
Problems
Squash bug, squash vine borer, striped cucumber beetle, bacterial wilt, mildews
Varieties
  • Embassy - heavy fruiting zucchini type
  • Sundance - smooth, bright yellow, crookneck type
  • Goldbar - golden yellow straightneck type
  • Peter Pan - light green scallop type
  • Papaya Pear - bright yellow fruit resemble papaya, harvest when fruit are 3" for continual harvest during the season, All-America Selections winner
  • Eight Ball - zucchini type with round fruit, AAS winner
  • Bossa Nova - ornamental foliage and fruit are both mottled, compact plants are great for containers, early maturing, AAS winner

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