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Squash and Cucumber - Started Too Early

Posted by PollenClouds 5a (My Page) on
Fri, May 2, 14 at 17:07

I started some plants indoors under a t5 grow light back in February. I know this is really early now, I misread a site when I was planting. I live in a zone 5a area. I thought maybe we could re-pot them under the lights or move them to windows. Anyway, the squash and cucumber are actually flowering at less than six inches tall, in a seedling starting tray. Will these straighten out once they get outside, have a small early harvest, or just go bust and not fruit at all?


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RE: Squash and Cucumber - Started Too Early

They might survive but the odds are against it. Both do much better when direct seeded as they don't tolerate transplanting well even under ideal conditions. If transplanted it needs to be before the 3rd true leaf develops.

If you have the space to see what happens with them fine. Otherwise I would pitch them and just direct seed them at the proper planting time.

Dave


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RE: Squash and Cucumber - Started Too Early

Normally, I agree with every common sense word digdirt writes and I also agree that it is probably best to start again with your plants. However, this bit: "they don't tolerate transplanting well even under ideal conditions. If transplanted it needs to be before the 3rd true leaf develops" is not imo strictly accurate under all circumstances. In cooler climates, like mine, squash are routinely transplanted. If direct sown it would well into June before the ground was anywhere near warm enough for them to germinate and even then they'd need sowing under a jam jar or cloche. As it is I will put mine out in mid May with some fleece protection, having started them in my glass porch 2 weeks ago. At the moment they are being hardened off. And they are often well past 3 true leaves before they get set out. You could cover all bases by starting new ones and setting out the old ones, just to see how they do.


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