Tender - plant on average date of last spring frost - about the same time that the first apples bloom.
Acidity (pH) Tolerance
6.8 to 5.5
Salinity (Ec) Tolerance
3.2 to 4.7 depending on variety
In spring apply between 1 1/2 and 2 pounds of complete fertilizer (20-20-20) per 100 feet of row.
Water deeply when soil is dry. During fruit production, avoid large fluctuations in soil moisture to prevent blossom end rot.
Plant Development and Care
Plants emerge in 3 to 5 days in adequately warm soil and quickly develop true leaves. When first true leaves develop, thin the plants saving the best three or four plants per hill. Cut the plant tops off those selected for removal to avoid damage to the other plant roots.
Most summer squash have a bush habit and many are bred for compact size. Plan on 4 square feet for each plant.
Water regularly to wet the soil to 10 to 20 inches deep. Drip or ground irrigation is preferable to overhead sprinkling to discourage diseases.
Use of black or clear plastic mulch cuts down the need for frequent watering. Clear plastic heats the soil and encourages rapid growth and development.
Insects, particularly honeybees, pollinate these plants. If they are not available the plants may not set fruit due to lack of pollination. Insufficient pollination sometimes results in deformed fruits.