Growing Zucchini, also Courgette/Marrow, Summer squash

Cucurbita pepo : Cucurbitaceae / the gourd family

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
S S           S S S S S
T T T             T T T
P P               P P P

(Best months for growing Zucchini in Australia - sub-tropical regions)

  • S = Plant undercover in seed trays
  • T = Plant out (transplant) seedlings
  • P = Sow seed
  • Grow in seed trays, and plant out in 4-6 weeks. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 21°C and 35°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 50 - 90 cm apart
  • Harvest in 6-9 weeks. Cut the fruit often to keep producing.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Corn, beans, nasturtiums, parsley, Silverbeet, Tomatoes
  • Avoid growing close to: Potatoes
  • a) seedlings
  • b) Six or seven weeks old
  • Zucchini flower

Plant into a slightly raised, well composted bed and mulch. Needs regular plentiful water. Produces large leaves with a spread of about 1.5 m x 1.5 m. Some varieties trail a bit but don't climb. The yellow (or gold) variety is more resistant to mould damage in humid areas and remains productive even when the leaves have mildew on them. The yellow varieties sometimes have yellow patches on their leaves but it is just colour not disease. If there are no bees around and the fruit are not setting well or die off after starting to grow, try picking a male flower (straight stem) and gently brushing pollen inside female flowers.

Blackjack is the most popular green variety. At the start, the plants produce mainly male flowers. The female ones start as the weather warms up and the plants grow. A spray with a 5 gm/teaspoon Bicarbonate of Soda in 600 ml/pint of water will help slow powdery mildew when it appears.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Zucchini

Zucchini are best picked or cut off the stem at about 15 cm / 6 inches.
Pick frequently to keep the plant producing new flowers.

Your comments and tips

04 Apr 08, Kel (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
Can you please tell me is a MARROW just an overgrown Zucchini ? I have always belived that they come from the same family but are different vegetables.
10 Jul 08, Renee (Australia - tropical climate)
Hi i'm new to having a vegie patch and have been trying all year to grow zucchini, they all seem to end up being male plants (no fruit on the flower) and not very big.... other plants growing well inthe same bed are carrotts, tomatos, basil, rosemary, mint, nasturiams, lemon grass, chilli, lettuce, sweet potato and cucumber, any tips?? Can zucchini be grown in NQld
14 Jul 08, Maan (Australia - tropical climate)
I live in QL Cairns, I have been over here only 6 months ,I grow Tomatos, green piper and zucchini,but the big problem with zucchini ,that the leave turs yelow blosums drops down before making the zucchini, few zucchinis sooo small turns yelow and rot ??? what is happing?/
17 Sep 08, lisa (Australia - tropical climate)
I planted my Zucchini in July and they started fruiting about 3 weeks ago but they get to about 10cm and then the flower drops off and they dont get any bigger. they start rotting. What should i be doing. I only have the one plant, does it have something to do with germination??
17 Sep 08, gareth (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
marrows are a type of zuccini and dido but marrows taste better when larger that zuccini.Zuccini taste like cardboard after they have reached about 15cm
25 Sep 08, gareth (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
how many zucchini would give me a constant supply of zucchini.Do they need any special requirements?
29 Sep 08, Grahame (Australia - temperate climate)
Gareth, We usually have about 3-4 zucchini plants for the 3 of us with plenty to give away to friends. You should get your fill of zucchini slice, stuffed zucchini etc... and you will probably be glad to see the back of them until next season... Make sure you check them every day because a little one can become a massive marrow in 1 or 2 days.
02 Oct 08, SONYA JONES (Australia - tropical climate)
I have grown zucchinis up here before without a problem but this time the fruits are getting stung by something. It leaves a few small brown spots on top and lays maggots inside. I can only use half the fruit after I cut away the bad bits.
02 Oct 08, SONYA JONES (Australia - tropical climate)
My zucchinis are getting stung by something. It lays a maggot into the fruit on the top so I usually only get to eat half after I cut away the bad bits.
06 Oct 08, Paul (Australia - temperate climate)
Does anyone know why my Zucchinis might have white spots on the leaves? Does not appear to be a pest and last season the same thing happened to a fully grown crop which then died.
Showing 1 - 10 of 254 comments

I've noticed with pumpkin (and I asdyme zucchini) they basically have to be pollinated from another plant of the same species. Make sure you buy 2 or 3 plants. I tried several years just having 1 pumpkin plant and hand pollinating itself, with pollination always failing. Now I usually hand pollinate zucchini and pumpkin in mornings by taking the male flower from one and pollinating the female flowers on other plants and vice versa. It worked really well last season and seems to be working well this year with blackjack zucchs.

- Jason

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