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Summer squash too big for sfg?

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Post  efirvin on 3/4/2012, 3:08 pm

I have always grown summer yellow squash and zucchini in my row gardens and they take up a lot of space!!What a Face Can I still grow some in a sfg without it taking over the whole box? I want to try to grow them up a trellis but still wonder how much space they will need.

Anyone else grow these squashes in sf

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Post  1airdoc on 3/4/2012, 3:27 pm

See pattipan's photo on this post: "Training squash on a trellis."
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Post  rrsmith60 on 3/4/2012, 7:01 pm

YES! You need to allow 9 sg ft, but yes.

I grow squash everyear in my boxes. As it grows just train it to run on the ground in the best area for you. Mow around it. If you don't have ground space, by all means go vertical, I grow canalope that way.
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Post  efirvin on 3/4/2012, 10:00 pm

"rrsmith60"YES! You need to allow 9 sg ft, but yes.

I grow squash everyear in my boxes. As it grows just train it to run on the ground in the best area for you. Mow around it. If you don't have ground space, by all means go vertical, I grow canalope that way.

Thanks for your encouragement!

I don't think I really have the room to let it run on the ground (it just takes over!).

Do you think I need to plant a vining type squash (yellow and zucchini)? I wonder if there is such a thing! Wink
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Post  Chopper on 3/4/2012, 10:13 pm

I grew in 4 squares (1 plant). The huge leave that were threatening other plants got cut off. The rest was trained to spill over the box. I worked out. Next time I would use the corner squares and actually put the seeds nearer to the edge.
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Post  yolos on 3/5/2012, 12:30 am

What variety of yellow summer squash is a vining type. The only yellow squash I have ever grown is yellow crook neck squash. It is a very large plant with hugh leaves and takes up a lot of space.
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Post  TN_GARDENER on 3/5/2012, 7:17 am

@yolos wrote:What variety of yellow summer squash is a vining type. The only yellow squash I have ever grown is yellow crook neck squash. It is a very large plant with hugh leaves and takes up a lot of space.

I suspect if you cut the lower leaves/branches, the plant would vine a bit more.

I guess I'm going to have to look in to the trellis thing, because every time I see it mentioned that squash would take a single square, I'm always left scratching my head.
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Post  rrsmith60 on 3/5/2012, 7:34 am




Most summer and winter squash are vining, some more than others. You can get some up-right bush type squash as well. I’ve seen bush patty pan and have grown bush 8-ball zucchini. My bush type squash needed to be supported, but produced reasonably well.

I usually grow 3 varieties of summer squash Raven (green), Costata Romanesco (image below) and Zephyr (yellow & green). These all have done well for me in boxes.

As you can see from the image, they get big, but if you love squash as I do it’s worth giving up the space.





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Post  lisaphoto on 3/5/2012, 8:19 am

I have always let me zucchini go nuts on the ground, or some of it could shade my garlic or onions. This year I am putting them in the corners of my 3 sisters garden and allowing a few squares, plus they can spill over. But I am also going to try Tromboncino squash which supposedly is a vine, and is easily trellised. You can pick it young and it taste like zucchini, or let it mature to a giant winter squash. Also, supposedly, it is not bothered by as many pests or diseases as zucchini. I'm really excited to try it.
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Post  walshevak on 3/5/2012, 8:37 am

The least amount of squares I've seen is 2 squares for 1 squash. And outer squares so the plant can drift over the edge even if trellised.

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Post  TN_GARDENER on 3/5/2012, 8:58 am

@walshevak wrote:The least amount of squares I've seen is 2 squares for 1 squash. And outer squares so the plant can drift over the edge even if trellised.

Kay

That's what I'm planning to do. I've got a couple spots in my garden that ought to work fairly well so long as I train my zucchini early.
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Post  Squat_Johnson on 3/5/2012, 11:03 am

The best result I have had is to put 4 squash plants in the corners of a 4x4. I put beans in the middle, the beans did OK for a while, eventually getting shaded by the monsters.

I ran them up the posts, and trimmed dead leaves from the bottom.
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Post  elliephant on 3/5/2012, 3:21 pm

I do 4 in the corners of a 4x4, too. This year I put an "extra" sprout in the middle (like 5 on a die) and it's looking too crowded. I need to get out there and put in posts in and run them up, cutting off the bottom leaves. That was the plan but I haven't gotten to it, and I just saw my first blossom this morning! It was a female and I'm sad that it won't produce because of no pollination, but there is a male flower that has lightened in color, which means it will open soon, so I'm hoping they will both be open tomorrow morning.

I also grow Tatume and Tromboncino, which are vining squash. If they grow well they can take over an entire trellis, plus some, however.
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Post  GWN on 3/5/2012, 4:01 pm

I tried to grow zucchini up a trellis last year, but it does not seem to grow by vines......
OR is it just the variety I used?
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Post  elliephant on 3/5/2012, 4:03 pm

Most squash will not readily climb a trellis. Most are bush types. Tatume and Tromboncino (aka Rampicante) are the 2 varieties that I know are vining.
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Post  quiltbea on 3/5/2012, 4:35 pm

I've only grown mine in a 9-sq foot corner.

Summer squash too big for sfg? 07-03-10

This was a Black Beauty Zucchini taken on 7/3 when the plant was still small. As you can see, its not a vining type and the leaves are Huge before the end of the season. But it gave me fruits right into Oct. I had tried tucking a pepper plant within the space, but it only gave me one small pepper. The marigolds in the near corner did OK tho since they grew right into Halloween.

I'm doing the same again this year because it was worth it.

Edited to add: I also have grown Soleil yellow summer squash and they take the same space and do well in 9-sq ft corners. They are about the same size as these zukes.
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Post  camprn on 3/5/2012, 5:29 pm

I have separate boxes just for the sprawling squash and melons, away from the other vegetable garden boxes.

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Post  rrsmith60 on 3/5/2012, 7:18 pm

Quiltbea,

I'm with you, I'm staying with my recomendation of 3x3 or 9 sf/squash. I tried a smaller space but the yeilds were less and all the other near by plants suffered.

I also have 3 midseason 3x3 boxes that I plant my late squash in.

The photos below were taken July 29th, we had squash well into October.Summer squash too big for sfg? July_212
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Post  efirvin on 3/5/2012, 7:38 pm

Thanks for all the good info! It will definitely impact my planting plans. I love both squashes so can't imagine a garden without them.
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Post  elliephant on 3/5/2012, 9:07 pm

I should probably mention that in planting my squash 4 to a 4x4 I do not expect them to produce for months on end. Either powdery mildew or the evil squash vine borer will kill them off after a month or two of production.
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Post  quiltbea on 3/5/2012, 9:50 pm

elliphant.....That's too bad, your losing your crops early. I guess that's one of the pitfalls of living in the deep south. Too many pests to contend with for longer periods. In the cool of the north, there are fewer pests and they die off sooner.
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Post  quiltbea on 3/5/2012, 9:51 pm

rrsmith....I love your boxes. That's a great way to plan them.
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Post  The Cat's Other Mother on 3/5/2012, 10:09 pm

Powdery mildew took out many of my squash and cukes last year, but I had a patty pan squash bush that seemed immune, and it produced all summer. I'm hoping to find one at my neighborhood plant sale again. It makes a very large bush, so I'll be giving it its own box.

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Post  rrsmith60 on 3/6/2012, 7:40 am

Quitbea – Thanks for noticing my boxes…



Elliphant – Powdery mildew is often the result of poor air circulation. You may have too much in the box, thus promoting this problem. If you have infected plants don’t compost them, you run the risk of contaminating your compost and passing the mildew to other boxes. If you have a box that consistently has PM problems, spay the Mel’s mix every week or so with a sulfur mixture (organic way). Spray in the spring when the soil is wet.

At first sign of PM, you could try spraying a mixture of baking soda and water at a rate of 1/ tsp to 1 quarter of water.

As for the dreaded Vine Borer; I start by using row covers over the plants and entire box until the squash start vining out of the box and setting blossoms. I then spray around the base of the plant with rotenone (a natural bug killer) at regular intervals.

Last resort, you can operate, removing the VB closing the cut in the plant by wrapping with pantyhose. It works…

Good Luck!
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Post  elliephant on 3/6/2012, 8:58 am

Ron,

Thanks for all the tips. I do preventative sprays from the very beginning. The first year I had my squash 1 to a 2.5 by 2.5 box and still got PM. We just really have perfect conditions for it down here. We also get multiple generations of SVB. That's the trade off for being able to plant my squash on January 17th and already have blossoms at the beginning of March (4 more today!). I'll continue all my PM and SVB fighting techniques, but I've also resigned myself to the fact that growing squash is not at all easy in my climate.
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