How to Grow Summer Squash

Planting advice for how to grow summer squash, recommended varieties and summer squash recipes, including zucchini recipes.

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Squash (Summer)

Cucurbita pepo

Summer squash—which include crookneck, zucchini, straightneck and scallopini—is a serious ally for dieters and health-minded cooks. Steamed, grilled, fried or baked in a casserole, squash delivers the nutritional goods.

Hardiness: Annual.

Planting advice: In well-draining soil, sow four or five seeds in a 1-inch-tall hill. When seedlings reach 2 or 3 inches tall, thin to two healthy seedlings per hill.

Harvest tips: Pick all varieties when they're immature, or they grow tough and woody. Pick long, narrow varieties before they're 2 inches in diameter and are 6 to 8 inches long; 3 to 4 inches in diameter for pattypan and scallopini varieties.

Recommendations: Sundance (crookneck), Aristocrat (zucchini), Goldbar (straightneck), Peter Pan (scallopini).

More Zucchini Recipes»

Source: Birds & Blooms "Grow Veggies for Less"