Zucchini contains vitamins A and C, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium and other useful substances. Its dietary fiber adsorb toxins, reduce blood cholesterol. This vegetable is considered an indispensable dietary product. Thanks to the gentle pulp, easily digestible by the body, it is recommended as the first lure for infants. At the same time, vegetable marrows are not so difficult to grow. But there are some tricks that will help to get a truly rich harvest from each bush.8 tricks for a large crop of squash
Following them, to satisfy the needs of one average family in zucchini, it is enough to plant 3-4 bushes of the plant, from which to receive 2-3 fruits daily in the season. Zucchini unpretentious, grow well and very quickly, give a large crop until the month of October.
1. Choose crop seeds
Think of a big crop at the seed selection stage. Choose varieties and hybrids that have established themselves as the most productive. For example, a variety of zucchini "Gribovsky 37" or self-pollinated hybrids "Ezra F1", "Mostra F1", "Iskander F1".
As a rule, hybrids are more productive, resistant to disease, and enter the fruiting phase much earlier.
Read also our article on 10 varieties and hybrids of squash, which are not afraid of diseases and the vagaries of the weather.
2. Grow zucchini through seedlings
The seedling method of growing zucchini helps to get the first crop much earlier. Especially in regions with a temperate climate or in years with a cool lingering spring. Naturally, the seedling method also increases the size of the total crop taken from one bush.
Zucchini seeds germinate easier if you soak them in a small amount of water for one hour.
To grow zucchini seedlings, it is better to take a large capacity, because this vegetable first forms the root system, and then the green mass grows.
About 25-30 days after the appearance of the first seedlings, the seedlings of zucchini are ready for planting in the ground. It is not necessary to feed seedlings, it is only necessary to monitor soil moisture.
When planting zucchini seedlings in open ground during the day, the temperature should be about + 24 ... +26, at night not lower than + 14 ... +15 degrees.For growing seedlings of zucchini, it is better to take a large capacity.
3. Plant zucchini correctly
Zucchini love organics, so for a large crop they are planted in warm compost beds or in warm holes. When landing on a compost heap (due to fermentation inside) the earth is as if warmed up. In this case, the zucchini will grow, even if the snow has not yet melted around. At the same time, they must be protected with a double greenhouse shelter with a distance between coatings of 30 cm (the effect of a thermos is created).
A warm hole is done this way: a hole is excavated for 2 bayonet shovels and filled with weeds. Ideally, fresh nettle along with dry grass. All this is sprinkled on top of the ground, into which seedlings of vegetable marrows are planted. A couple of days before planting seedlings, it is good to water the wells with undiluted infusion from fermented grass.
Between the bushes of vegetable marrows, the earth is mulched with a thin layer of dry grass or weeds. It retains moisture and protects against weeds.
Seedlings should be planted at a distance of at least 80 cm to give each bush a sufficient area of nutrition, and to make it convenient to harvest.
4. Formation of a bush - a mandatory procedure
The formation of a bush of zucchini is made in dry sunny weather, so that all sections are quickly dried up, and the infection does not get there. It is advisable to sprinkle the places of cuts with ash or activated carbon.
What to crop?
All leaves lying on the ground are removed (so that there is less disease and infection). Leaf spine - do not cut! He feeds the ovary.
Not every zucchini flower brings fruit, because there are male and female flowers. In female flowers you can see a thickening where the fruit will be located, in male flowers this thickening is not. The first male empty flowers are removed almost completely so as not to deplete the bush. But later you cannot remove all the empty flowers. Male flowers are needed for female pollination.
When growing self-pollinated hybrids, male flowers are not needed and can be completely removed.
In addition, when forming bushes of zucchini, the largest leaves are partially cut off, leaving only their stem. This is necessary so that they do not obscure the ovary and there is good ventilation inside the bush. Removing the largest leaves on a zucchini bush is a good prevention of decay of a young ovary.Male zucchini flowers do not have a thickening on the stem.
5. Feed the squash three times a season
To obtain a really large crop of zucchini require top dressing. During the season, zucchini feed at least three times.
- On the 10th day after transplanting make nitrogen top dressing. It can be a herbal infusion diluted with water in a ratio of 1:10.
- When zucchini begins to bloomagain do the same nitrogen top dressing.
Herbal infusion is done as follows. They fill the container with grass (it’s good to put dandelion leaves, burdock, nettle stalks, a shepherd’s bag, plantain), fill it with water, cover it with a lid.
After 7-10 days, when the greens are fermented, dilute the infusion at the rate of 1 liter per 10 liters of water, mix and add each bush of zucchini.
- In the phase of the beginning of fruiting potash fertilizer works well. 2 liters of wood or grass ash pour a bucket of water, leave for a day. You can just sprinkle ash under a bush before watering.
All top dressing is carried out in dry cloudy weather, so that a burn does not occur on the leaves.
Extra dressing for zucchini (if the ovary is bad or rotting occurs) based on boron (Boro Miltelial). 5 g of boron in a bucket of water, add 40 drops of iodine and whey 1-2 cups (you can up to 1 liter). Serum is a lactic acid bacteria that prevents fungi from developing, which is very good for plant immunity. Iodine is a good antiseptic.
6. Water the zucchini if necessary
During watering, make sure that it is humid under the bush. But do not overdo it and between waterings let us dry out slightly the top layer of the earth. Depending on weather conditions, watering zucchini is recommended no more than 1-2 times a week.
Important: one and a half weeks before the mass harvest do not water the zucchini, otherwise they will be poorly stored and rot.
7. Harvesting - the main trick
The first 2-3 young fruits of zucchini must be cut after they reach 12-15 cm in length, this stimulates the continuation of fruiting in plants.
Do not leave the squash on the bush until the ripening stage (when it reaches its maximum size and begins to turn yellow). The bush will put all its strength into the formation of seeds and this will lead to a sharp decrease in further yield.
The plant, as it were, receives a signal that the breeding mission is completed, and you will receive from it 1-2 zucchini per week, instead of two daily. At the same time, the fruiting period will also be reduced from 4-5 months to one and a half.
That is, zucchini should be plucked young (with a length of not more than 20 cm), which not only increases productivity, but also allows you to have more delicious fruits.
Fruits must be cut with a sharp knife, and not broken out so as not to damage the plant.Zucchini should be plucked young, which not only increases productivity, but also allows you to have more delicious fruits.
8. If you have problems
Here are some of the most common problems encountered when growing zucchini, their causes and solutions.
A plant loses fruit before they begin to grow
Zucchini is a real summer vegetable. If it is quite cold and rainy, the plant begins to lose small fruits more often.
In addition, the reason may be that female flowers are not fertilized. Such fertilization, as a rule, is done by bees and bumblebees, but, unfortunately, they are becoming less and less.
You can help your zucchini by hand pollination. Tear off the male flower and swipe along the pestle of the female flower, thus transferring pollen.
A lot of empty flowers, the fruits are poorly tied, or the ovary rots
The reason is the lack of trace elements. If your zucchini grows on a compost heap, they have enough nitrogen and few micronutrients. The above boron top dressing quickly solves this problem.
The following solution will help against powdery mildew in zucchini: 40 drops of brilliant green or iodine, or 5 tablets of Metronidazole per 10 liters of water. They should generously pour bushes on a leaf from a watering can.
Have a good harvest!