You may wanna try staking. Staking up your zucchini is a simple task to do. All you have to prepare is a wooden stake, wire, or tape to glue your zucchini plant to its support.
Do you often experience problems with pests when growing your zucchini on the ground? Or do you only have a narrow area to grow them? You can try the vertical gardening method of planting using trellis, tomato cages, or canes. It is simple and affordable and makes it easier for you to care for and harvest the fruits when they are ripe. With such excellent benefits, no wonder that people want to understand how to grow zucchini vertically.
In this article, we will walk you through a step-by-step guide to growing zucchini with the help of trellis and tomato cages. Furthermore, easy tips and tricks to train them on frame and cage are available. Hence, read it to the end, so you don’t miss important information about growing zucchini vertically!
Table of Contents
- Benefits of growing zucchini vertically
- Methods to grow zucchini vertically
- How do you stack a zucchini vertically? – easy steps
- How do I train my zucchini to climb?
Benefits of growing zucchini vertically
You may wonder, what are the benefits of growing zucchini vertically? Is it better than planting them on the ground? Well, it is! Below is the list of advantages of planting them on the trellis.
1. Save Spaces
Farmers are beginning to realize that growing zucchini with vertical gardening saves a lot of space in their fields. Zucchini plants generally have the habit of rambling on the ground and can be trained to propagate on the stakes. You just give it a distance of about 16-18 feet from one trellis to another to provide space for their roots. It also offers fruits room to develop until ripe.
2. Handy Maintenance
In addition to saving a lot of space, it also makes it easier for them to take care of the zucchini fruits, such as fertilizing and watering. You no longer need to look for the ends of the vines or bushes because they are definitely at the base of the stakes or trellis.
3. Easy Harvest
Given that they grow on the stakes, you can also harvest them easily because the fruits hang on the trellis. Additionally, it also prevents you from stepping on mature fruits. And since you have to prune a few leaves above the fruits while harvesting, growing zucchini fruit vertically makes it easy to do this from one fruit to another.
4. Improve Air Circulation
Planting with this method also improves air circulation. Unlike those growing crowded on the ground, the trellis let the vines and the fruits exposed to the fresh air. It is helpful in preventing them from pests and fungal diseases. These two problems are generally caused by too humid air due to wet or soggy soil.
Methods to grow zucchini vertically
Considering the tons of benefits of planting zucchini vertically, you can probably understand why this method of growing is becoming popular. Now, it is time to know some practices you can adopt to start your zucchini planting journey. Don’t worry! They are beginner-friendly so that you can follow them easily.
1. Using trellis
Trellis is the most popular support for growing zucchini vertically. Usually, the trellises are made of wood and metals that can hold heavy fruits without problems. Furthermore, some prefer to build a grid to provide wider space for zucchini plants to grow vertically and spread. For this frame, both materials can work great. Meanwhile, the rest choose the simple one, stake a cane on the ground with circular rubber or used tires as the base. You can also try to build a roof-like design to make a sturdy structure with wood.
2. Growing in the tomato cage
The tomato cage will give your zucchini extra protection and support, especially to bear heavy fruits. To use it for planting the vines, you must ensure that the zucchini is upside down in the cage while the leaves are enclosed in the ring. Next, consider the size of your cage. Buy one with a height of around six feet tall to have a sturdy structure. A short cell may cause overcrowding, making the air circulation so bad.
3. Staking grids in containers
This method is actually similar to the trellis one. The difference lies in the shape and size of the framework, which is made like a mini-grid. You can start by planting zucchini in a pot. Then, prepare a mini-grid on the back of the plant stem to allow them to crawl on the frame. And that’s it! Super fast and easy, isn’t it?
How do you stack a zucchini vertically? – easy steps
So, how to grow zucchini vertically? You may wanna try staking. Staking up your zucchini is a simple task to do. You don’t require much equipment or complicated steps to make one. All you have to prepare is a wooden stake, wire, or tape to glue your zucchini plant to its support. Then, we are ready to jump into the easy steps to stake the zucchini you can try at home!
- Introduce the stake to the soil once they finish sprouting. Don’t forget to provide 1-2 inches of space from the stem. It is a better way to avoid damaging the early established roots and make it easier for you to adjust the plant to the support.
- Next, train your plant to the stake by securing it to the string after they reach about 4-6 inches tall. Tie loosely first at this stage, so their stems get used to growing upwards.
- Keep tying them up to help them lean on the stakes every time they grow a few inches. You will require binding at each point of the stems when they start producing fruit.
- Lastly, remove dead leaves, especially near sets of fruits. It is beneficial to keep the nutrients and energy for their growth on the stake and make the fruits develop properly. A healthy plant also prevents fungal diseases, like powdery mildew, from infecting your zucchini.
One of the advantages of staking your zucchini plant is to prevent pests, like rodents and rats, from feasting on the fruits as they are hanging on the support. You will also reduce the risks of powdery mildew infection as you can easily prune the leaves throughout the growing season.
How do I train my zucchini to climb?
You can try the stake and twine method to train your zucchini plant to grow vertically. It is one of the most common practices that are easy to do. Follow these steps to help your plant thrives on support:
- Prepare a 12-16 inches size of a garden bed.
- Drive the wooden stake to the bed about 6 feet tall.
- Tie your plants loosely to the stake with wires or cables as they grow. Ties that are too tight may stress out your zucchini as this is the first time they are trying to grow upwards.
- Do not introduce the stake after your zucchini plants mature or produce fruits because this will potentially interfere with their root system and nutrient distribution. The best time is to put the stake before or while they are seedlings.
It is possible to grow zucchini vertically with a 6-feet tall trellis, stake, or tomato cage. But first, you must train the zucchini plants so that they are getting used to climbing up. This vertical gardening method has many benefits, such as simplifying maintenance, preventing pest invasion and fungal disease, and allowing quick and easy harvest.
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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Is it better to grow zucchini vertically than on the ground?
Growing zucchini plants vertically has multiple benefits than on the soil surface. It allows you to harvest zucchini more quickly because you will have easy access to the fruits as they are hanging on the trellis. In addition, it also saves space. Thus, you can use the rest of your land to grow other vegetables. In addition, vertical gardening lets the zucchini plant or summer squash get enough sunlight for growth.
Do zucchini plants need support?
If you grow zucchini vertically, you must provide them with stakes or trellis to support their growth. Even though they have tiny vining tendrils, they are too fragile to hold zucchini fruits, with an average weight of about 300 grams per fruit. Moreover, it may not apply to those growing zucchini plants on the ground as they can freely ramble. Nonetheless, you can train them on a trellis in case you have limited garden space.
How tall should the trellis be for zucchini?
The ideal average height for a zucchini trellis is about 6 feet tall to ensure the support can hold the zucchini plant when they produce fruit. In addition to determining the height, you need to make sure that the trellis’s position does not block the sunlight from shining on other plants. Generally, you need to offer 16-18 feet of distance between each other.
How tall do zucchini plants grow?
Zucchini or summer squash can grow around 2-3.5 feet, with 1-4 feet for the bush varieties. However, it highly depends on the cultivars. Some will let the vines up to 6-10 feet and 6 feet wide. Make sure you adjust the cultivar you choose to the land you have. If it’s too narrow, choose the bush zucchini or grow them vertically.
Can I use a tomato cage for zucchini?
You can use a tomato cage to support the zucchini plant. In fact, the stake helps improve good air circulation for your fruits. Thus they can avoid the invasion of pests, such as squash bugs, powdery mildew, and squash vine borers, which like humid conditions. In addition, the tomato cage also protects the zucchini from floppy on the ground.