Squash & Zucchini Spacing

Fred_in_Maine(Southern Maine)May 30, 2007

I've never grown Squash or Zucchini. Everyone tells me that squash and zucchini need a lot of room. So on our last frost date in Southern Maine I transplanted the seedlings into my largest raised bed, 4 feet by 6 feet.

If you look closely you will see two tiny crook neck squash seedlings planted near the chain-link fence. I hope to train them to the fence. At the front of the raised bed is one Raven Zucchini seedling.

Last year was my first year as a gardener and I made the same mistake that many Newbies make. I planted everything way to close.

I do not want to make the same mistake this year, but it seems that there is a lot of unused space in this bed. Should I leave well-enough alone and let these few plants own this bed?

Or might I be able to plant a few more veggies in this bed? If so, what would you suggest? Thanks for your help. Fred in Maine

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The SFG book recommends a 3 foot by 3 foot space for zucchini or yellow squash. I set up my first SFG this year, and somewhere between the back door and the garden spot I forgot the spacing, so I just put each one in a single square (luckily at corners). This has turned out to be a Bad Thing. The adjacent stuff (peppers) are severely undersized since the squash are blocking out the sunshine.

People with more SFG experience will probably be more helpful, but I'd have spaced myself out as recommended in the book if I had it to do over.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2007 at 10:31PM
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I'm a little further north in "central-ish Maine" I have fairly long experience with these sort of squash (and haven't planted any because I don't like them enough to put them in the limited space I have now (and my parents will probably grow plenty of extra a short distance away), but yes, those squash will get "that big," and sooner than you would think. If you want to try and use the space in between I would quickly plant some leaf lettuces (you may be able to find them all started at garden centers), spinach and radishes. The spring crops that can still grow now (well probably, although with the current temperatures it is a toss-up).

Anyway, plant things that will be grown quickly (like the radishes) or which wouldn't survive the heat of summer in the space between these squash. Spiniach probably should be planted long before the squash are set out. "Short term" crops are the best way to take avantage of the space between your squash which will only last for a short time.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2007 at 10:00AM
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