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Chapter

Vegetables
20

I. Beans, Snap 2
II. Beets 3
III. Broccoli 4
IV. Brussels Sprouts 5
V. Cabbage 7
VI. Cantaloupes 8
VII. Carrots 9
VIII. Cauliflower 10
IX. Cucumber 12
X. Eggplant 13
XI. Kohlrabi 14
XII. Lettuce 15
XIII. Onions 16
XIV. Peas 18
XV. Peppers 19
XVI. Pumpkin 20
XVII. Radish 21
XVIII.Summer Squash 22
XIX. Sweet Corn 24
XX. Swiss Chard 25
XXI. Tomatoes 26
XXII. Turnips 27
XXIII.Watermelon 29
XXIV. Winter Squash 30
Further Reading 31

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Chapter 20

Vegetables
G. F. Gardner
George F. Gardner, Former Extension Educator, Bannock County, Pocatello

I. Beans, Snap the top 7 to 8 inches of soil, destroy current


weed growth, and provide a granular soil
A. Food Value
bed for seeding. Overcultivation causes the
A pound of raw green bean pods broken soil to become powdery or to crust.
into 1- or 2-inch lengths yields about 3 2/3
E. Seed Time
cups of cooked beans. They are composed
of 90.1 percent water, 145 calories, 8.6 The best time to seed beans is after the last
grams of protein, 0.9 gram of fat, and 32.2 killing frost in the spring, when day tem-
grams of carbohydrates. perature is 65°F and the night is expected to
average above 55°F. Select early maturing
B. Description
varieties that ripen in 55 to 70 days.
Snap beans grown from the immature pod
F. Planting Specifications:
originated in Central America and were
widely distributed by the Indians, basically Seed per foot 6 to 8
as bush and pole beans. Bush beans ripen Row width 18 to 30 inches
earlier, but pole bean yields are higher. Germination 6 to 14 days
Seed depth 1 1/2 to 2 inches
C. Yield Per Person
Ounce per foot 0.13
It is estimated that each person will con- Plant spacing 2 to 4 inches
sume 6 to 12 pounds of garden fresh beans
G. Planting Suggestions
and 12 to 14 pounds of canned or frozen
beans per year. Each foot of row space Beans need a warm soil to grow and good
planted to beans produces an average of spacing for sunlight. Some gardeners are
0.35 to 0.5 pound of snap beans. A 20- to tempted to soak their seeds before planting.
30-foot row of beans produces enough This practice injures many of the bean vari-
beans for one person. eties, and could result in poor germination
and diseased, weak plants.
D. Seedbed
H. Fertilizer
Beans do best on sandy loam soil that
warms up early in the spring and has a soil Beans are a legume and can produce some
pH from 7.0 to 7.5 but can tolerate a soil pH of their own nitrogen (N) because of their N
near 8.0. Cultivate the soil for planting fixation ability. The seed may be inoculated
when the moisture in the soil allows the for- with rhizobium to stimulate additional fixa-
mation of a soil ball that crumbles into tion. To supplement this, add a preplant fer-
pieces under finger pressure. Cultivate to tilizer of 0.2 pound of N for each 100 square
mix crop residues and organic matter into feet. After the first heavy bloom and set of
pods, sidedress with 1 1/2 ounces of ammo-
nium sulfate.
Acknowledgment
The amount of fertilizer applied should be
The author compiled information for Chapters 19 based on a soil test report from the Univer-
and 20 from the Virginia, Utah, Oregon, and Wash- sity of Idaho Analytical Laboratory or a pri-
ington Master Gardener handbooks and adapted it to vate testing laboratory. Plants are easily
Idaho conditions. over- or under-fertilized.
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 2
I. Cultivation protein, 0.5 gram of fat, 23.7 grams of carbo-
Cultivate (shallow) when necessary to re- hydrates, and 145 calories.
move other plant competition. Deep cultiva- B. Description
tion close to the plants destroys much of the Beets are native to the Mediterranean area
root system and reduces yield and quality. of north Africa, Europe, and west Asia.
J. Watering They are cool weather biennials that are
Beans have a water stress point of 60 per- grown as annuals for their leaves and roots.
cent. When the percentage of water in soil The roots may be round, flat, or elongated.
drops below this level, the plant will start to They are usually red in color, but there are
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down several golden varieties.
or stopped. To estimate water percentage, C. Yield Per Person
take a handful of soil at the 6-inch depth and On the average, each person consumes 7 to
squeeze it into a ball in your hand. If it 12 pounds of fresh beets during a growing
forms a ball and your hand feels like it has a season, and an additional 12.5 to 30 pounds
film of water on it, the soil moisture will be of canned and frozen beets. Each foot of
60 percent or higher. If the soil moisture is row space should produce approximately
below 60 percent, you will not feel the film 1.25 pounds of beets.
of water on your hand, and it is time to wa- D. Seedbed
ter again. Plant growth can suffer from too
Beets grow best in sandy loam and peat
much or too little water. The symptoms will
soils. Heavy clay soils can be improved by
be the same. As the percentage of soil mois-
the addition of organic matter. Seedbed
ture drops the oxygen level in the soil in-
preparation should start when the soil has
creases.
sufficient moisture to form a ball that
K. Insects crumbles into medium-sized fragments.
Lygus bugs, nitidulid beetles, aphids includ- Cultivate to mix crop residues and organic
ing the bean aphid, army worms and cut- matter into the top 7 to 8 inches of soil, de-
worms, grasshoppers, pea leaf weevil, corn stroy current weeds, and provide a small
maggot, slug, spider mites, cucumber granular-type bed for planting. Overculti-
beetles, and wireworms create problems in vated soil becomes powdery and has a ten-
beans. dency to crust. The ideal pH for beets is
L. Diseases from 6.0 to 7.5, although a pH value near
Common diseases include brown spot, curly 8.0 is acceptable.
top, halo blight, mosaics, necrosis, root rot, E. Seed Time
rust, sclerotinia disease, white mold, seed The best time to seed beets is 2 to 4 weeks
rot, and seedling blight. before the last killing frost in the spring
M.Harvesting when soil temperature is 50°F or above. Se-
Beans can be harvested when pods are 3 lect early maturing varieties that ripen in 55
inches long but before the seed is much to 65 days.
larger than the diameter of a pencil lead. F. Planting Specifications:
Harvest every 3 to 4 days to prevent over Ounce per foot 0.01
maturity. Frequent picking stimulates the Seed per foot 15 to 20
plants to produce new pods and helps to en- Row width 2 to 18 inches
sure a heavy harvest. Disturbing wet vines Germination 10 to 15 days
spreads rust and other diseases. Seed depth 1/2 to 1 inch
Plant spacing 2 to 3 inches
II. Beets Row spacing 12 inches
A. Food Value G. Planting Suggestions
A pound of raw, peeled, common red beets Beets need a cool soil to grow and good
consists of 90.9 percent water, 5.0 grams of spacing for sunlight. Their frost tolerance is

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moderate. They are not harmed by spring M.Harvesting
and fall frosts, but their roots may become Beets can be harvested as soon as the roots
tough during hot weather. The seed of beets are large enough to use. Early thinning is
is actually a dried fruit or seed ball contain- critical for beets to develop large, tender
ing several tiny true seeds. Heat, drought, or roots. Leave 2 inches between plants. The
crusting of the soil surface interferes with tops of beets removed during thinning can
seed germination and emergence. Make suc- be used for “greens.” Beets are ready to be
cessive plantings 3 weeks apart to ensure a pulled up for their roots 8 to 9 weeks after
continuous supply of young beets. seeds are sown. Roots are most tender when
H. Fertilizer less than 2 inches across. Harvest for stor-
Preplant fertilizer is a recommended 0.2 age before roots become woody. Pull the
pound of N for each 100 square feet. No beet and cut off the tops, but leave 1 to 1 1/2
sidedressing is required. The amount of fer- inches of top above the crown. To see if
tilizer applied should be based on a soil test roots are ready for use, push the soil away
report from the University of Idaho Analyti- from the top of the beet and check its size.
cal Laboratory or a private testing labora-
tory. Plants may be over- or under-fertil-
III. Broccoli
ized. A. Food Value
I. Cultivation A pound of broccoli stalks (head or bud
Use shallow cultivation when necessary to clusters, stem, and leaves) consists of 89.1
remove other plant competition. Deep culti- percent water, 16.3 grams of protein, 1.4
vation close to the plants destroys much of grams of fat, 26.8 grams of carbohydrates,
the root system and reduces yield and quality. and 145 calories.
J. Watering B. Description
Beets have a water stress point of 50 per- Broccoli is a member of the cabbage family
cent. When the percentage of water in soil with similar requirements and problems. It
drops below this level, the plants will start was developed in southern Europe and
to dehydrate, and growth will be slowed brought to America by immigrants. The
down or stopped. To estimate the water per- plant has a loose flower head on a tall,
centage take a handful of soil at the 6-inch green, branching stalk. The flower heads are
depth and squeeze it into a ball in your formed both terminally and laterally. The
hand. If it forms a ball but feels dry, the soil plant may grow to 3 to 5 feet tall.
moisture will be 50 percent or higher. If the C. Yield Per Person
soil moisture is below 50 percent, the ball It is estimated that each person consumes 3
will be fragile and break apart with slight to 5 pounds of fresh broccoli during a grow-
pressure, and it is time to water again. Plant ing season and an additional 5 to 6 pounds
growth can suffer from too much or too little of frozen broccoli each year. Each foot of
water. The symptoms will be the same. Plants row space produces about 0.75 pound of
need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow. broccoli.
K. Insects D. Seedbed
Alfalfa looper, army worm, cutworms, flea Broccoli will grow in most soils from sand
beetles, two-spotted mite, variegated cut- to clay. Seedbed preparation should start
worm, zebra caterpillar, and nematodes are when the soil has sufficient moisture to
common beet pests. form a ball that crumbles into medium-sized
L. Diseases fragments. Cultivate mix crop residues and
Disease problems include boron deficiency, organic matter into the top 7 to 8 inches of
curly top, damping-off, downy mildew, and soil, destroy weed growth, and provide a
leaf spot. small granular-type bed for transplanting.
Overcultivated soil becomes powdery and

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has a tendency to crust. The ideal pH for a ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and
broccoli is from 6.0 to 7.0, but values near your hand feels like it has a film of water on
8.0 are acceptable. it, the soil moisture will be 60 percent or
E. Seed Time higher. If the soil moisture is below 60 per-
The best time to seed broccoli is 6 to 8 cent, you will not feel the film of water on
weeks before transplanting when soil tem- your hand, and it is time to water again.
perature is 50°F or above. The variety Plant growth can suffer from too much or
should have an early maturity date and be too little water. The symptoms will be the
suitable for weather conditions in the area same. As the percentage of soil moisture
planted. The maturity date should be 60 to drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases.
80 days after transplanting. Plant in contain- Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to
ers inside for early crops and transplant after grow.
last frost. K. Insects
F. Planting Specifications: Aphids, cabbage maggots, cabbage worm,
Seed per foot 3 to 4 cabbage looper, diamond back moth, flea
Row width 24 to 30 inches beetles, spider mites, and wireworms are
Germination 3 to 10 days common broccoli pests.
Seed depth 1/2 inch L. Diseases
Plant spacing 20 to 24 inches Diseases include bacterial soft rot, club root,
G. Planting Suggestions and downy mildew.
Broccoli needs a cool soil to grow and good M.Harvesting
spacing for sunlight. If transplants are pur- Broccoli should be harvested when the cen-
chased, they should be stocky and from 4 to ter head is 4 to 6 inches across, but before
6 inches tall. the buds separate or open. Lateral buds will
H. Fertilizer develop into smaller heads after the terminal
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for head is removed. When a head is ready for
each 100 square feet is recommended. Three use, cut the stem 3 inches below the flower
weeks after transplanting, sidedress with buds.
1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate (south-
ern Idaho) or ammonium nitrate (northern IV. Brussels Sprouts
Idaho) per 10 feet of row. The amount of A. Food Value
fertilizer applied should be based on a soil A pound of Brussels sprouts consists of 85.2
test report from the University of Idaho percent water, 22.2 grams of protein, 1.8
Analytical Laboratory or a private testing grams of fat, 37.6 grams of carbohydrates,
laboratory. Plants may be over- or under- and 204 calories.
fertilized. B. Description
I. Cultivation Brussels sprouts originated in Europe, the
Use shallow cultivation when necessary to principal location being Brussels, Belgium.
remove other plant competition. Deep culti- They resemble small cabbages but require a
vation close to the plants destroys much of the longer growing season. Each plant grows to
root system and reduces yield and quality. about 2 1/2 feet tall, bearing small cabbage
J. Watering like buds along its stem. Each stem may
Broccoli has a water stress point of 60 per- bear as many as 100 1- to 2-inch ball-like
cent. When the percentage of water in soil sprouts.
drops below this level, the plant will start to C. Yield Per Person
dehydrate and growth will be slowed down On the average, each person eats from 1.5 to
or stopped. The percentage of water in the 3.75 pounds of fresh Brussels sprouts during
soil can be estimated by taking a handful of a growing season and uses an additional
soil at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into 3.75 to 6 pounds of canned or frozen sprouts

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20 - 5
during the year. Each foot of row space pro- row. The amount of fertilizer applied should
duces about 0.5 pound of Brussels sprouts. be based on a soil test report from the Uni-
From 3.5 to 8.5 feet of row space per person versity of Idaho Analytical Laboratory or a
should be planted for fresh use during the private testing laboratory. Plants may be
growing season and an additional 3.5 to 14 over- or under-fertilized.
feet for canning or freezing. H. Cultivation
D. Seedbed When necessary, cultivation should be shal-
Brussels sprouts are adaptable to different low to remove other plant competition.
soils as long as the soils are fertile, have Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
good texture, and are moist. Brussels stroy much of the root system and reduce
sprouts mature less rapidly than cabbage. yield and quality. Hilling soil up around the
Seedbed preparation should start when the main stem of the cabbage may stimulate
soil has sufficient moisture to form a mud early heading.
ball that you can crumble into medium- I. Watering
sized fragments. Cultivation should mix Brussels sprouts have a stress point of 55
crop residues and organic matter in the top 7 percent. When the percent of water in soil
to 8 inches of soil, destroy current weed drops below this level, the plant will start to
growth, and provide a small granular-type dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down
bed for transplanting. Overcultivated soil or stopped. The percent of water in the soil
becomes powdery and has a tendency to can be estimated by taking a handful of soil
crust. The ideal pH for Brussels sprouts is at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a
from 6.0 to 7.5; they do well in Idaho’s soil, ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and your
which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0. hand feels like it is moist but does not leave
E. Seed Time a film of water on it, the soil moisture will
The best time to plant Brussels sprouts seed be 55 percent or above. If the soil moisture
in containers is 4 to 6 weeks before trans- is below 55 percent, the moisture will not be
planting in the garden, when soil tempera- felt on your hand, and it is time to water
ture is 40°F or above. Seed planted in the again.
garden for later maturing plants should be Plant growth can suffer from too much or
inserted into the soil as soon as the soil can too little water. The symptoms will be the
be cultivated, 6 to 8 weeks before the last same. As the percentage of soil moisture
killing frost. The variety of Brussels sprouts drops the oxygen level in the soil increases.
planted should have an early maturity date Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to
and be suited for weather conditions in the grow.
area planted. The maturity date should be 80 J. Insects
to 90 days after transplanting.
Aphids, flea beetles, cabbage looper, garden
F. Planting specifications— symphylans, slugs, thrips, and cauliflower
Seed per foot 3 to 4 head maggot are common pests.
Row width 24 to 30 inches K. Diseases
Germination 3 to 10 days
Brussels sprouts diseases are minimal in
Seed depth 1/4 to 1/2 inch
Idaho but may include bacterial soft rot,
Planting space 18 to 24 inches
blackleg, club rot, and sprout rot.
G. Fertilizer
L. Harvesting
Brussels sprouts require good fertility and
Remove lower leaves as sprouts start to en-
moisture. A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound
large. Harvest sprouts as they become solid
of N for each 100 square feet is recom-
at about 1 to 2 inches in diameter. The low-
mended. When the plants are one-third
est sprouts will mature first. To speed up
grown, sidedress with 1 1/2 ounces of am-
sprout maturity pinch off the tip of each
monium sulfate in high pH soils or ammo-
plant in late August or early September,
nium nitrate in low pH soils per 10 feet of
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20 - 6
however, this may reduce the total yield of E. Seed Time
the plant by as much as one third. Break the The best time to plant cabbage seed is 5 to 7
sprouts from the stalk. The tastiest sprouts weeks before transplanting in containers.
will be those that mature after the first fall Large cabbage transplants may produce
frost. seed stalks if subjected to 3 to 4 weeks of
M.Storage 40° to 50°F weather. To help prevent this
When night temperatures drop to 20°F on a problem, plant out transplants when the
regular basis, dig up the plants with a little stem is about the size of a pencil lead when
soil remaining around the roots. Put them soil temperature is 50°F or higher. Seeds
into a deep cold frame or in an unheated planted in the garden for later maturing
dark garage. They will continue to grow un- plants should be inserted into the soil as
til all the sprouts mature. soon as the soil can be cultivated, 6 to 8
weeks before the last killing frost. Select
V. Cabbage cabbage varieties suited to weather condi-
A. Food Value tions in the area planted. Maturity dates
should be 65 to 95 days after transplanting.
A pound of cabbage consists of 92.4 percent
water, 5.9 grams of protein, 0.9 gram of fat, F. Planting Specifications:
24.5 grams of carbohydrates, and an aver- Seed per foot 8 to 10
age of 109 calories. Row width 24 to 30 inches
B. Description Germination 4 to 10 days
Seed depth 1/4 to 1/2 inch
Cabbage ranks as one of the most important
Plant spacing 4 to 6 inches
homegrown crops. It may be globular, flat,
or flowery and green, red, or purple. It was G. Fertilizer
developed from wild leafy nonheading A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for
plants native to Europe. each 100 square feet is recommended.
C. Yield Per Person When the plants are one-third grown,
sidedress with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium
On the average each person eats 4 to 5
sulfate in alkaline soils and ammonium ni-
pounds of fresh cabbage during a growing
trate in acid soils per 10 feet of row. The
season, and an additional 6 to 12 pounds of
amount of fertilizer applied should be based
canned or frozen cabbage during the year.
on a soil test report from the University of
Each foot of row space produces about 1.5
Idaho Analytical Laboratory or a private
pounds of cabbage. Plant 5 to 6 feet of row
testing laboratory. Plants may be over- or
space per person for fresh use during the
under-fertilized.
growing season and an additional 7.5 to 15
feet for canning. H. Cultivation
D. Seedbed Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
sary, to remove other plant competition.
Cabbage is adaptable to different soils as
Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
long as they are fertile, have good texture,
stroy much of the root system and reduce
and are moist. Start seedbed preparation
yield and quality. Hilling soil up around the
when the soil has enough moisture to form a
main stem of the cabbage may stimulate
mud ball that will crumble into medium-
early heading.
sized fragments. Mix crop residues and or-
ganic matter into the top 7 to 8 inches of I. Watering
soil, destroy current weed growth, and pro- Cabbages have a water stress point of 55
vide a small granular-type bed for trans- percent. When the percent of water in soil
planting. Overcultivated soil is powdery and drops below this level, the plant will start to
has a tendency to crust. The ideal pH for dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down
cabbage growth is 6.0 to 7.5, and they do well or stopped. To estimate water percentage,
in Idaho soil, which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0. take a handful of soil at the 6-inch depth and

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20 - 7
squeeze it into a ball in your hand. If it gram of fat, 34.0 grams of carbohydrates,
forms a ball and your hand feels like it is and an average of 136 calories.
damp but does not have a film of water on B. Description
it, the soil moisture will be 55 percent or Cantaloupes are native to India. The plants
above. If the soil moisture is below 55 per- have separate male and female flowers on
cent, the dampness of water will not be felt the same vine and are cross-pollinated. They
on your hand, and it is time to water again. do not cross-pollinate with cucumbers,
Plant growth can suffer from too much or gourds, watermelons, squash, or pumpkins.
too little water. The symptoms will be the Cantaloupes may develop a bitter flavor be-
same. As the percentage of soil moisture drops cause of cloudy weather, excessively high
the oxygen level in the soil increases. Plants temperatures, or too much or too little water
need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow. during the ripening period. They need a lot
J. Insects of heat and a long growing season to ma-
Aphids, flea beetles, cabbage looper, blister ture.
beetles, diamond back moth, wireworms, C. Yield Per Person
and the imported cabbage worm are com- Each person eats about 8 to 10 cantaloupes
mon cabbage pests. during the growing season. Each foot of row
K. Diseases space produces about 1 pound of canta-
Cabbage diseases, minimal in Idaho, may loupe, and 8 to 10 feet of row will supply
include bacterial soft rot, blackleg, club rot, one person.
damping off and wire stem, downy mildew, D. Seedbed
drop or watery soft rot, leaf spot, and oedema. Cantaloupes are adapted to most soils but
L. Harvesting grow best in a fertile mellow soil with large
Cabbage is ready to harvest 50 to 65 days amounts of compost. Seedbed preparation
after transplanting. The heads should be should start when the soil has sufficient
solid but must be picked before they crack. moisture to form a mud ball that will
Soft heads have poor quality. Heads may crumble into medium-sized fragments. Mix
split during hot weather if there is an over crop residues and organic matter into the top
supply of water. Reducing irrigation or 7 to 8 inches of soil, destroy current weed
twisting the mature heads part of the way growth, and provide a small granular-type
around to sever half the roots will allow ma- bed for transplanting. Overcultivated soil
ture cabbage to stay in the garden longer becomes powdery and has a tendency to
without losing quality. Plants harvested crust. The ideal pH for cantaloupe growth is
early in the summer and left with as many from 6.0 to 7.5, but the fruit does well in
leaves as possible will often develop small Idaho soil, which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
heads on the stem next to the base of the E. Seed Time
leaves. These heads are edible and should The best time to transplant cantaloupes in
be picked when firm. Idaho is 3 weeks after the last killing frost.
M.Storage When transplanting, soil temperature should
Cabbage freeze at about 30°F. For storage, be 65°F or above, and night temperature
place mature cabbages in a pit, trench, or should average above 55°F. Select varieties
outdoor cellar. The temperature should be as that ripen in 75 to 85 days after transplanting.
near 32°F as possible but at least 40°F or F. Planting Specifications:
below. Humidity should be high. Stored Seed per foot 1
cabbages will last into early winter. Ounce per foot 0.05
Row width 60 to 72 inches
VI. Cantaloupes Germination 3 to 5 days
A. Food Value Seed depth 1 inch
A pound of raw cantaloupe consists of 91.2 Plant spacing 36 to 72 inches
percent water, 3.2 grams of protein, 0.5
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20 - 8
G. Planting Suggestions M.Harvesting
Cantaloupes need warm soil to grow and Cantaloupes must ripen on the vine for
good spacing for sunlight to ensure high maximum quality. Ripe fruit forms an ab-
sugar content and flavor. If transplants are scission layer, and the stem loosens from
used, they should be stocky. Soils should be the fruit. When the stem is nearly loose, the
well drained and contain large amounts of cantaloupe is said to be at the full slip stage.
compost or well-rotted manure. Clear plas- Softening of the blossom end, a change in
tic mulch can be used around the plants to color of the base of the pedicel from green
warm the soil. to waxy, and a strong cantaloupe smell are
H. Fertilizer indications of ripeness. Cantaloupe har-
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for vested before the full slip stage do not in-
each 100 square feet is recommended. One crease in sugar after picking.
week after blossoming begins, sidedress VII. Carrots
with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate per
10 feet of row. The amount of fertilizer ap- A. Food Value
plied should be based on a soil test report Carrots are a good source of vitamins A, B,
from the University of Idaho Analytical B2, and C, sugar, and iron. A pound of car-
Laboratory or a private testing laboratory. rots consists of 88.2 percent water, 5.0
Plants may be over- or under-fertilized. grams of protein, 0.9 gram of fat, 44.0
I. Cultivation grams of carbohydrates, and an average of
Cultivate no more than 1 inch deep to con- 191 calories.
trol weeds. B. Description
J. Watering Carrots are related to the wild flower Queen
Cantaloupes have a water stress point of 60 Anne’s Lace. They have bright green feath-
percent. When the percent of water in soil ering foliage 10 to 12 inches tall and de-
drops below this level, the plant will start to velop an orange yellow root.
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down C. Yield Per Person
or stopped. The percent of water in the soil Each person eats about 5 to 10 pounds of
can be estimated by taking a handful of soil fresh carrots and an additional 10 to 15
at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a pounds of canned or frozen carrots per year.
ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and your Each foot of row space should produce
hand feels like it has a film of water on it, about 1 pound of carrots.
the soil moisture will be 60 percent or D. Seedbed
above. If the soil moisture is below 60 per- Carrots grow best in sandy loam and peat
cent, the film of water will not be felt on soils. Heavy clay soils can be improved by
your hand and it is time to water again. the addition of organic matter. If you apply
Plant growth can suffer from too much or manure, do so sparingly and use only well-
too little water. The symptoms will be the rotted manure to avoid rough, branching
same. As the percentage of soil moisture carrots. Seedbed preparation should start
drops the oxygen level in the soil increases. when the soil has sufficient moisture to
Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to form a mud ball that will crumble into me-
grow. dium-sized fragments. Cultivation should
K. Insects mix crop residues and organic matter in the
Aphids, cucumber beetle, and squash bug top 7 to 8 inches of soil. It should destroy
are common pests. current weed growth and provide a small
L. Diseases granular-type bed for transplanting. Over-
cultivated soil becomes powdery and has a
Diseases include Fusarium wilt, leaf blight,
tendency to crust. The ideal pH for carrot
and powdery mildew.
growth is from 6.0 to 7.0, but it does well in
Idaho soil, which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
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20 - 9
E. Seed Time I. Cultivation
Plant carrots after the last killing frost in the Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
spring when soil temperature is 40°F or sary, to remove other plant competition.
above. Their frost tolerance is moderate. Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
Low temperature carrots grow long and stroy much of the root system and reduce
have pointed tips. High temperature carrots yield and quality.
have blunt tips. For an extended harvest, J. Watering
you can continue planting throughout the Carrots have a water stress point of 55 per-
summer until about 70 days before the last cent. When the percent of water in soil
expected frost. Most varieties mature in 60 drops below this level, the plants will start
to 70 days. to dehydrate, and growth will be slowed
F. Planting Specifications: down or stopped. The percent of water in
Ounce per foot 0.02 the soil can be estimated by taking a handful
Seed per foot 15 to 20 of soil at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it
Row width 14 to 24 inches into a ball in your hand. If it forms a ball,
Germination 10 to 17 days and your hand feels damp, but does not have
Seed depth 1/2 inch a film of water on it, the soil moisture will
Plant spacing 1 to 2 inches be 55 percent or above. If the soil moisture
G. Planting Suggestions is below 55 percent, the dampness will not
Carrots prefer warm soil and need good be felt on your hand, and it is time to water.
spacing for proper root development. A salt Plant growth can suffer from too much or
or pepper shaker can be used to scatter too little water. The symptoms will be the
seeds in the row. For small gardens, try same. As the percentage of soil moisture
growing carrots in raised beds at least 12 drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases.
inches deep. A mixture of one-fifth garden Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to
soil, two-fifths sand, and two-fifths compost grow.
or peat moss works well. Carrot seedlings K. Insects
are tiny. Some gardeners mix a few radish The following insects may cause problems:
seeds with the carrot seeds so they can see aphids, carrot rust fly, garden symphylan,
the row. wireworm, six-spotted leafhopper, and slug.
To prevent the soil from forming a crust that L. Diseases
would inhibit the seedling’s growth, cover Diseases include aster yellows, cottony soft
the seeds with a light layer of compost, rot, damping-off, leaf spot, deaf blight, mot-
(sifted) grass clippings, and sawdust of ver- ley dwarf virus, phytophthora root rot, and
miculite. A film of clear plastic over the nematode soft rot.
seedbed will speed up germination by
M.Harvesting
warming the soil, prevent crusting, and keep
the soil moist. Remove the plastic as soon as Carrots can be harvested as soon as the
the seedlings emerge. Thin seedlings to 2 roots are the size of your little finger. Har-
inches apart. vest carrots before they become woody.
H. Fertilizer N. Storage
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for Carrots can be stored throughout the fall and
each 100 square feet is recommended. No winter in a pit, storage cellar, or covered
sidedressing is required. The amount of fer- row. Storage temperature should be as near
tilizer applied should be based on a soil test 32°F as possible. Humidity should be high.
report from the University of Idaho Analyti-
VIII. Cauliflower
cal Laboratory or a private testing labora-
tory. Excessive N causes carrots to split into A. Food Value
forks in the top half. A pound of cauliflower with head and 4 to 6
inches of stem consists of 91 percent water,
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 10
23.2 grams of protein, 1.7 grams of fat, 44.7 F. Planting Specifications:
grams of carbohydrates, and an average of Seed per foot 3 to 4 per hill
232 calories. Row width 30 to 36 inches
B. Description Germination 4 to 10 days
The most delicate member of the cabbage Seed depth 1/2 inch
family, cauliflower has similar requirements Plant spacing 18 to 20 inches
and problems. It was developed in southern G. Planting Suggestions
Europe and is grown for its flower buds, Cauliflower needs cool soil and good spac-
which are clustered together in a head or ing. If transplants are used they should be
curd. It may be difficult to grow because it stocky and from 4 to 6 inches tall. Trans-
requires cool temperatures, constant mois- plant about the same time as the last killing
ture, and frequent fertilizing. Cauliflower frost.
does not head up well in hot weather and is H. Fertilizer
less tolerant of cold temperatures than cab-
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for
bage. It grows about 2 feet high and has
each 100 square feet is recommended.
blue green leaves.
When the plants are grown, sidedress with
C. Yield Per Person 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate in high
It is estimated that each person eats from 3 pH areas or ammonium nitrate in low pH
to 5 pounds of fresh cauliflower and 8 to 12 areas per 10 feet of row. The amount of fer-
pounds of canned or frozen cauliflower each tilizer applied should be based on a soil test
year. Each foot of row space produces about report from the University of Idaho Analyti-
1 pound of cauliflower. cal Laboratory or a private testing labora-
D. Seedbed tory. Plants may be over- or under-fertil-
Cauliflower grows in most soils from sand ized.
to clay. Seedbed preparation should start I. Cultivation
when the soil has sufficient moisture to Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
form a mud ball that will crumble into me- sary, to remove other plant competition.
dium-sized fragments. Cultivation should Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
mix crop residues and organic matter in the stroy much of the root system and reduce
top 7 to 8 inches of soil. It should destroy yield and quality. Hill the soil up around
current weed growth and provide a small, each plant.
granular bed for transplanting. Overcultivated J. Watering
soil becomes powdery and has a tendency to
Cauliflower has a water stress point of 60
crust. The ideal pH for cauliflower is from
percent. When the percent of water in soil
6.0 to 7.5. It is a plant that does well in
drops below this level, the plant will start to
Idaho’s soil, which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down
E. Seed Time or stopped. The percent inches of water in
The best time to seed cauliflower is 6 to 8 the soil can be estimated by taking a handful
weeks before transplanting when soil tem- of soil at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it
perature is 50°F or above. The variety of into a ball in your hand. If it forms a ball,
cauliflower planted should have an early and your hand feels like it has a film of wa-
maturity date and should be developed for ter on it, the soil moisture will be 60 percent
weather conditions in the area planted. Ma- or above. If the soil moisture is below 60
turity date should be 60 to 80 days after percent, a film of water will not be felt on
transplanting. For transplants, start seeds your hand, and it will be time to water
indoors 5 to 7 weeks before the last ex- again.
pected frost. Seed directly into the garden as Plant growth can suffer from too much or
early as 4 weeks before the last expected too little water. The symptoms will be the
frost. Allow 50 to 85 days for maturity, de- same. As the percentage of soil moisture
pending upon variety. drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases.
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 11
K. Insects will crumble into medium-sized fragments.
Aphids, cabbage maggot, cauliflower head Cultivation should mix crop residues and
maggot, diamond back moth, flea beetles, organic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches of
spider mites, and wireworms are common soil. It should destroy current weed growth
pests. and provide a small granular-type bed for
L. Diseases transplanting. Overcultivated soil becomes
powdery and has a tendency to crust. The
Diseases include bacterial soft rot, club root,
ideal pH for cucumber growth is from 5.5 to
downy mildew, blackleg, black rot, damp-
7.0, but it does well in Idaho soil, which
ing-off, wirestem drop or watery soft rot,
ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
leaf spot, and oedema.
E. Seed Time
M.Harvesting
The best time to seed cucumbers in Idaho is
To prevent discolored heads, tie the plant
3 weeks before transplanting when soil tem-
leaves above the head to shade it when the
perature is 65°F or above and night tem-
head reaches golf ball size. Cut the head 4
perature is expected to average above 55°F.
to 6 days later. Make your decision based on
The variety of cucumbers planted should
the temperature, but be sure to cut it before
have an early maturity date and should be
the curd starts to separate. Leave 4 to 6
developed for weather conditions in the area
inches of stem with the head.
planted. Maturity date should be 55 to 65
N. Storage days after transplanting. Cucumbers may be
Cauliflower freezes at 30°F. Store in a cellar seeded directly into the soil. They are killed
with a temperature as near 32°F as possible. by very light frosts. Cucumbers love warm
Humidity should be moderately high. Stored soil, and the use of plastic mulches is com-
under ideal conditions, cauliflower may last mon.
up to 6 to 8 weeks. F. Planting Specifications:
IX. Cucumber Seed per foot 6 to 8
Ounce per foot 0.05
A. Food Value Row width 75 to 72 inches
A pound of raw, whole cucumbers with Germination 6 to 10 days
skins consist of 95.7 percent water, 2.7 Seed depth 1 inch
grams of protein, 0.5 gram of fat, 14.5 Planting spacing 12 to 24 inches
grams of carbohydrates, and provide an G. Planting Suggestions
average of 64 calories.
Cucumbers need a warm soil to grow and
B. Description good spacing for sunlight. If transplants are
Native to Asia and Africa, cucumbers do purchased, they should be stocky.
not cross-pollinate with muskmelons or wa- H. Fertilizer
ter melons, and the flavor of cucumbers is
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for
not affected by the pollen from these plants.
each 100 square feet is recommended. One
C. Yield Per Person week after blossoming begins, sidedress
It is estimated that each person eats from 2.5 with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate in
to 4 pounds of cucumbers per year, requir- high pH soils or ammonium nitrate in low
ing a row of cucumbers 2 to 3 feet long. pH soils. The amount of fertilizer applied
Each foot of row space should produce about should be based on a soil test report from
0.8 pound of cucumbers. the University of Idaho Analytical Labora-
D. Seedbed tory or a private testing laboratory. Plants
Cucumbers grow in most soils, but they may be over- or under-fertilized.
grow best in a fertile soil with 5 percent or I. Cultivation
more organic matter content. Seedbed When necessary, cultivation should be shal-
preparation should start when the soil has low to remove other plant competition.
sufficient moisture to form a mud ball that Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 12
stroy much of the root system and reduce of protein, 0.9 gram of fat, 18.6 grams of
yield and quality. If it becomes necessary to carbohydrates, and an average of 86 calo-
cultivate, penetrate the soil no deeper than 1 ries.
inch. B. Description
J. Watering Native to India, eggplants grow from 2 to 3
Cucumbers have a water stress point of 60 feet tall. The fruit is generally large and
percent. When the percent of water in soil purple or white in color, with smooth, shiny
drops below this level, the plant will start to skin. The seeds are embedded in the flesh.
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down C. Yield Per Person
or stopped. The percent of water in the soil Each person eats about 3 to 5 pounds during
can be estimated by taking a handful of soil a growing season and will use 2 to 3 pounds
at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a for canning, storage, or freezing. This will
ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and your require a row of eggplants 6 to 10 feet long.
hand feels like it has a film of water on it, Each foot of row space should produce
the soil moisture will be 60 percent or about 1 pound of fruit.
above. If the soil moisture is below 60 per-
D. Seedbed
cent, the film of water will not be felt on
your hand, and it is time to water again. Eggplants grow in fertile, sandy loam soil.
Seedbed preparation should start when the
Plant growth can suffer from too much or
soil has sufficient moisture to form a mud
too little water. The symptoms will be the
ball that will crumble into medium-sized
same. As the percentage of soil moisture
fragments. Cultivation should mix crop resi-
drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases.
dues and organic matter in the top 7 to 8
Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to
inches of soil. It should destroy current
grow.
weed growth and provide a small granular-
K. Insects type bed for transplanting. Overcultivated
The following insects may cause problems: soil becomes powdery and has a tendency to
aphids, cucumber beetle, cabbage looper, crust. The ideal pH for eggplant growth is
thrips, slugs, spider mites, garden from 5.5 to 6.4, but it does well in Idaho
symphylans, and wireworms. soil, which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
L. Diseases E. Seed Time
Diseases include Alternaria leaf spot, angu- Plant seeds in containers 10 weeks before
lar leaf spot, bacterial wilt, curly top mo- transplanting in soil with a 65°F tempera-
saic, powdery mildew, root knot, nematode ture or above. The variety should have an
root rot, scab, and white mold. early maturity date and should be developed
M.Harvesting for weather conditions in the area planted.
Cucumbers may be harvested any time after The maturity date should be 75 to 95 days
they have reached the desired size, but be after transplanting.
sure to do so before the cucumbers turn yel- F. Planting Specifications:
low and the seeds become hard. For slicing, Seed per foot 6 to 8
the fruits should be 6 to 10 inches long. Row width 24 to 36 inches
Harvest when 2 1/2 to 6 inches in length for Germination 8 to 12 days
pickles. Cucumbers are of the highest qual- Seed depth 1/4 to 1/2 inch
ity when they are dark green in color, firm, Plant spacing 18 to 24 inches
and crisp. G. Planting Suggestions
X. Eggplant Eggplants need a warm soil to grow and
good spacing for sunlight. If transplants are
A. Food Value purchased, they should be stocky and from
A pound of cooked (boiled) drained egg- 4 to 6 inches tall. A plastic mulch can be
plant contains 94.3 percent water, 4.5 grams used to increase soil temperatures.

Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook


20 - 13
H. Fertilizer XI. Kohlrabi
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for A. Food Value
each 100 square feet is recommended.
A pound of kohlrabi contains of 92.2 per-
When the first fruits set, sidedress with
cent water, 7.7 grams of protein, 0.5 gram
1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate in high
of fat, 24.0 grams of carbohydrates, and will
pH areas or ammonium nitrate in low pH
provide an average of 109 calories.
areas. The amount of fertilizer applied
should be based on a soil test report from B. Description
the University of Idaho Analytical Labora- Developed in northern Europe, kohlrabi is a
tory or a private testing laboratory. Plants member of the cabbage family with similar
may be over-fertilized. requirements and problems. The edible por-
I. Cultivation tion is an above-ground enlargement resem-
bling a mild turnip in shape and flavor. An
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
excellent raw addition to relish dishes, it
sary, to remove other plant competition.
also may be boiled, stuffed, or baked.
Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
stroy much of the root system and reduce C. Yield Per Person
yield and quality. Each person will eat from 2 to 4 pounds of
J. Watering fresh kohlrabi a season, and 4 to 8 pounds
for canning or freezing. A foot of row space
Eggplants have a water stress point of 65
produces about 0.75 pound of kohlrabi.
percent. When the percent of water in soil
drops below this level, the plant will start to D. Seedbed
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down Kohlrabi grows in most soils from sand to
or stopped. The percent inches of water in clay. Seedbed preparation should start when
the soil can be estimated by taking a handful the soil has sufficient moisture to form a
of soil at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it mud ball that will crumble into medium-
into a ball in your hand. If it forms a ball sized fragments. Cultivation should mix
and your hand feels like it has a film of wa- crop residues and organic matter in the top 7
ter on it, the soil moisture will be 65 per- to 8 inches of soil. It should destroy current
cent, the film of water will not be felt on weed growth and provide a small, granular-
your hand, and it is time to water again. type bed for transplanting. Overcultivated
Plant growth can suffer from too much or soil becomes powdery and has a tendency to
too little water. Symptoms will be the same. crust. The ideal pH for kohlrabi is from 6.0
As the percentage of soil moisture drops, to 7.5, and the plants do well in Idaho soil,
the oxygen level in the soil increases. Plants which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow. E. Seed Time
K. Insects—The following insects may cause Seed kohlrabi in container 6 weeks before
problems: aphids, Colorado potato beetle, transplanting in soil with 65°F or above. The
spider mites, western potato flea beetle, and variety should have an early maturity date
wireworms. and should be developed for weather condi-
L. Diseases—Common diseases include an- tions in the area planted. The maturity date
thracnose, cercospora leaf spot, root rot fun- should be 60 to 70 days after transplanting.
gus, and verticillium wilt. F. Planting Specifications:
M.Harvesting Seed per foot 8 to 12
Eggplant can be harvested any time after the Row width 18 to 24 inches
fruits reach egg size, but be sure to do so Germination 3 to 10 days
before the fruit reaches full maturity and the Seed depth 1/2 inch
seeds harden. The quality of young fruit is Plant spacing 18 to 24 inches
better than older fruit. Leave a short stem on G. Planting Suggestions
the fruit when harvesting. The stems are Kohlrabi needs a cool soil to grow and good
woody, so harvest with pruning shears. spacing for sunlight. If transplants are pur-
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 14
chased, they should be stocky, from 4 to 6 XII. Lettuce
inches tall.
A. Food Value
H. Fertilizer
A pound of lettuce contains 95.1 percent
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for water, 5.4 grams of protein, 0.9 gram of fat,
each 100 square feet is recommended. 11.3 grams of carbohydrates, and will pro-
When the plants are one-third grown, vide an average of 64 calories.
sidedress with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium
B. Description
sulfate in high pH areas or ammonium ni-
trate in low pH areas per 10 feet of row. The Lettuce is the most extensively grown and
amount of fertilizer applied should be based important of all salad crops. Common let-
on a soil test report from the University of tuce comes in three types: head, leaf, and
Idaho Analytical Laboratory or a private butterhead. It is native to Mediterranean and
testing laboratory. Plants may be over- or Near East. It grows best at low temperatures
under-fertilized. and is sensitive to high temperatures.
I. Cultivation C. Yield Per Person
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces- Each person will eat about 4 to 5 pounds of
sary, to remove other plant competition. fresh lettuce during a growing season. Each
Deep cultivation close to the plants will de- foot of row space should produce about 0.5
stroy much of the root system and reduce pound of lettuce. About 10 feet of row space
yield and quality. per person should be planted for fresh use
during the growing season.
J. Watering
D. Seedbed
Kohlrabi has a water stress point of 50 per-
cent. When the percent of water in soil Lettuce is adaptable to different soils as
drops below this level, the plant will start to long as they are fertile, of good texture, and
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down moist. The plants grow quickly. Seedbed
or stopped. The percent of water in the soil preparation should start when the soil has
can be estimated by taking a handful of soil sufficient moisture to form a mud ball that
at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a will crumble into medium-sized fragments.
ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and feels Cultivation should mix crop residues and
damp, but fails to leave a film of water on organic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches of
your hand, the soil moisture will be 50 per- soil. It should destroy current weed growth
cent or above. If the soil moisture is below and provide a small, granular-type bed for
50 percent, the film of water will not feel transplanting. Overcultivated soil becomes
damp, and it is time to water again. powdery and has a tendency to crust. The
ideal pH for lettuce growth is from 6.0 to
Plant growth can suffer from too much or
7.0, but lettuce does well in Idaho soil,
too little water. Symptoms will be the same.
which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
As the percentage of soil moisture drops the
oxygen level in the soil increases. Plants E. Seed Time
need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow. The best time to seed lettuce is 4 to 6 weeks
K. Insects before transplanting when soil temperature
is 50°F or above. Transplant lettuce into the
The following insects may cause problems:
garden when it is 2 to 3 inches tall and night
aphids, flea beetles, cabbage looper, and
temperature is 25°F or above. For garden-
wireworms.
planted lettuce, plant as soon as the ground
L. Harvesting can be worked and 6 to 8 weeks before the
Kohlrabi is ready to harvest 50 to 60 days last killing frost. To spread out the lettuce
after transplanting. It has the best flavor season, make subsequent plantings every 2
when it is 2 to 4 inches in size, and the flesh weeks. Early plantings should be placed
is still tender. The leaves of the young plant where they get full sunlight, and later
may be used like spinach. plantings in partial shade for hot summer

Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook


20 - 15
growth. The variety should have an early beetles, wireworms, cutworms, army
maturity date and should be developed for worms, and slugs.
weather conditions in the area planted. The L. Diseases
maturity date should be 55 to 80 days after Lettuce diseases include anthracnose, aster
transplanting. yellows, big vein virus, bottom rot fungus,
F. Planting Specifications: downy mildew, drop or watery soft rot, mo-
Seed per foot 4 to 8 saic, and red rib.
Row width 18 to 24 inches M.Harvesting
Germination 4 to 8 days Lettuce thinnings can be used for early sal-
Seed depth 1/4 to 1/2 inch ads. The lettuce heads should be solid but
Plant space, leaf 6 to 12 inches not overly mature when harvested. Butter-
Plant space, head 8 to 15 inches head lettuce can be harvested as soon as the
G. Planting Suggestions heads form. Leaf lettuce can be harvested
Lettuce needs light to germinate and may any time before it sends up seed stalks.
not germinate at temperatures of 80°F or
above. During hot weather, lettuce bolts, XIII. Onions
produces seed stakes, and develops internal A. Food Value
tip scorching and a bitter taste. A pound of onions contains 89.4 percent
H. Fertilizer water, 7.8 grams of protein, 0.9 gram of fat,
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for 37.2 grams of carbohydrates, and an aver-
each 100 square feet is recommended. age of 16.3 calories.
When the plants are 4 weeks old, sidedress B. Description
with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate per Onions are native to North America. They
10 feet of row. The amount of fertilizer ap- are cold hardy and adaptable to Idaho.
plied should be based on a soil test report There are more than 300 species of onions
from the University of Idaho Analytical in the world. In Idaho, onions are grown as
Laboratory or a private testing laboratory. green onions for table use and bulbs for
Plants may be over- or under-fertilized. storage. The bulbs for harvest come in yel-
I. Cultivation low, white, and red. They may be round,
Lettuce must be thinned to produce good flat, or long.
plants. For head lettuce, thin to 12 to 15 C. Yield Per Person
inches between plants. For leaf lettuce, thin Each person will eat about 3 to 5 pounds of
to 4 to 6 inches between plants in the first onions during a growing season and another
thinning and 6 to 12 inches in the final thin- 30 to 50 pounds per person may be desired
ning. Cultivation should be shallow to re- for storage. Each foot of row space should
move other plant competition. Deep cultiva- produce about 0.74 pound of onions. Plant
tion close to the plants will destroy much of from 3 to 5 feet of row per person for use
the root system and reduce yield and quality. during the growing season and an additional
Lettuce has a shallow, meager root system. 30 to 50 feet for storage.
J. Watering D. Seedbed
Lettuce has a shallow root system, and the Onions grow well in a wide range of soils
plant requires frequent watering to support and climates, but they develop best in a
rapid leaf development. Too much water on loose, crumbly soil with high fertility. Seed-
heavy soils may lead to leaf scorch and dis- bed preparation should start when the soil
ease. Don’t wet the foliage any more than has sufficient moisture to form a mud ball
necessary when watering. that will crumble into medium-sized frag-
K. Insects ments. Cultivation should mix crop residues
The following insects may create problems: and organic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches
aphids, flea beetles, looper, cucumber of soil. It should destroy current weed

Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook


20 - 16
growth and provide a small, granular-type Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
bed for transplanting. Overcultivated soil stroy much of the root system and reduce
becomes powdery and has a tendency to yield and quality. Onions have a shallow
crust. The ideal pH for onion growth is from root system and cannot compete with
5.5 to 7.0, but onions do well in Idaho soil, weeds.
which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0. J. Watering
E. Seed Time Onions have a water stress point of 70 per-
The best time to seed onions is 6 to 8 weeks cent. When the percent of water in soil
before the last killing frost in the spring drops below this level, the plant will start to
when soil temperature is 50°F or above. The dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down
variety of onion planted should have an or stopped. The percent of water in the soil
early maturity date and should be developed can be estimated by taking a handful of soil
for weather conditions in the area planted. at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a
The maturity dates should be 95 to 120 days ball in your hand. If it forms a hard ball and
for sets, and 95 to 120 days for plants (trans- your hand feels like it has a film of water on
plant to maturity and seed, 100 to 165 days). it, and the soil is sticky, the soil moisture
F. Planting Specifications: will be 70 percent or above. If the soil mois-
Ounce per foot 0.02 ture is below 70 percent, the film of water
Seed per foot 10 to 15 will not be felt on your hand, and it is time
Row width 12 to 14 inches to water again.
Germination 7 to 12 days Plant growth can suffer from too much or
Seed depth 1/2 inch too little water. The symptoms will be the
Sets depth 2 to 3 inches same. As the percentage of soil moisture
Plant space 3 to 4 inches drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases.
G. Planting Suggestions Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to
grow.
Onion sets should be separated into two
sizes: sets smaller than 3/4-inch and 3/4- inch K. Insects
and above. The large sets are used for green The following insects may create problems:
onions, as they frequently form seed stalks brown wheat mite, onion thrips, onion mag-
instead of a bulb. The smaller sets are used got, pea leaf miner, and wireworms.
for mature dry bulbs. Seeds for mature dry L. Diseases
bulbs should be sown indoors and trans- Disease problems include basal rot, downy
planted into your garden. mildew, neck rot, pink rot, purple blotch,
H. Fertilizer smut, and white rot.
Preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for M.Harvesting
each 100 square feet worked into the top 2 Green bunch onions can be harvested as
inches of soil is recommended. Fertilizers soon as desired. Thinnings from bulb onions
should be applied to the soil before seeding. can be used as green onions. Bulb onion
Sidedress with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium maturity is determined by softening of the
sulfate in high pH areas and ammonium ni- neck tissues, falling over of the tops, and
trate in low pH areas per 10 feet of row. Do dying of the roots. At maturity bulbs enlarge
so when onions are 12 inches tall or the rapidly and are ready for harvest when two-
bulbs begin to form. The amount of fertil- thirds of the top has fallen over or after a
izer applied should be based on a soil test light frost in Idaho’s short growing season.
report from the University of Idaho Analyti- If the onions are slow to mature, it may be
cal Laboratory or a private testing labora- necessary to bend the tops over to speed up
tory. Plants may be over- or under-fertilized. the maturity process before heavy frosts.
I. Cultivation Onions should then be pulled and, if the
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces- weather permits, left in the garden until tops
sary, to remove other plant competition. and outer scales are completely dry. The
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 17
tops can be spread over the bulbs to prevent E. Seed Time
sunburn. After the bulbs are cured they Plant peas as soon as the ground can be
should be topped. worked in the spring, about 6 to 8 weeks
N. Storage before the last killing frost. Soil temperature
With a freezing point of 30°F, you should for planting should be 50°F or above. Peas
store onions as near 32°F as possible in any are a cool climate crop, and their quality is
cool dry (humidity, 70 percent) place. They greatly influenced by cool soil and air tem-
keep well through the fall and winter in a perature. It is suggested that planting suc-
cool dry cellar or attic. cessions should be arranged at 10-day inter-
vals to spread harvest over a longer period
XIV. Peas of time.
A. Food Value F. Planting Specifications:
A pound of English peas contains 78.0 per- Seed per foot 6 or 7
cent water, 381 calories, 28.6 grams of pro- Row width 18 to 30 inches
tein, 1.8 grams of fat, and 65.3 grams of car- Germination 6 to 15 days
bohydrates. A pound of edible podded peas Ounce per foot 0.16
contains 84.8 percent water, 259 calories, Seed depth 2 inches
15.4 grams of protein, 1.4 grams of fat, and Plant spacing 3 inches
47.2 grams of carbohydrates. G. Planting Suggestions
B. Description Some gardeners make a double planting of
Garden peas originated in eastern Europe peas in each row with approximately a
and western Asia. They are one of the earli- 6-inch space between the plantings.
est vegetables picked in the spring. Peas are H. Fertilizer
classified smooth or wrinkled according to This plant is a legume and is able to draw N
how the seed looks when dry. The wrinkled from the air. Excessive N can cause the plants
seed is normally the sweetest. to produce large vines, but fewer peas are pro-
C. Yield Per Person duced. It is suggested that 0.2 pound of N be
It is recommended that 15 to 20 feet of row broadcasted over a 100 square foot area. The
space be planted per person for fresh use amount of fertilizer applied should be based
during the garden season and an additional on a soil test report from the University of
40 to 60 feet for storage and canning. About Idaho Analytical Laboratory or a private soil
0.28 pound of English peas is produced per testing laboratory.
foot of row space. Each person consumes I. Cultivation
about 4 pounds of fresh and about 10 Cultivation should be conducted only when
pounds of frozen and canned peas. necessary to remove other plant competi-
D. Seedbed tion. Pea roots are easily damaged by hoe-
Soil types for pea production range from a ing and shallow cultivation.
light sandy loam for early pea harvest to a J. Watering
heavy clay soil for later or main harvest Peas have a water stress point of 50 percent.
crop. The ideal pH for pea production is 6.0 When the percent of water in soil drops be-
to 7.5. The soil should be well drained and low this level, the plant will start to dehy-
moderately fertile. Cultivate the soil when drate, and growth will be slowed down or
the soil moisture will allow formation of a stopped. The percent of water in the soil can
mud ball that will crumble into pieces under be estimated by taking a handful of soil at
finger pressure. It should mix crop residue the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a ball
and organic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches in your hand. If it forms a ball and your
of soil, destroy current weed growth, and hand feels moist without a film of water on
provide a granular-type bed for seeding. it, the soil moisture will be 50 percent or
Overcultivated soil becomes powdery and above. If the soil moisture is below 50 per-
has a tendency to crust. cent, the moist condition will not be felt on
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 18
your hand, and it will be time to water dues and organic matter in the top 7 to 8
again. Plant growth can suffer from too inches of soil. It should destroy current
much or too little water. The symptoms will weed growth and provide a small, granular-
be the same. type bed for transplanting. Overcultivated
K. Insects soil becomes powdery and has a tendency to
The following insects may cause problems: crust. The ideal pH for pepper growth is
looper, cutworms, army worms, grasshop- from 5.5 to 7.0, but the pepper does well in
pers, pea aphids, pea leaf weevil, pea moth, Idaho soil, which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
pea weevil, and wireworms. E. Seed Time
L. Diseases The best time to seed peppers is 6 to 8
Diseases that may be a problem include bac- weeks before transplanting when soil tem-
terial blight, basal stem rot, downy mildew, perature is 65°F or above. The variety of
enation mosaic virus, leaf and pod blight, peppers planted should have an early matu-
root rots, seed rot, damping off, seed borne rity date and should be developed for
mosaic virus, viruses, and wilt. weather conditions in the area planted. The
maturity date should be 60 to 80 days after
M.Harvesting
transplanting.
English peas can be harvested when pods
F. Planting Specifications:
are nearly full but before pods begin to
wrinkle. Edible podded peas should be har- Seed per foot 6 to 8
vested while the pods are still flat and the Row width 24 to 36 inches
peas are hardly discernible. These peas need Germination 10 to 20 days
to be picked every other day to prevent over Seed depth 1/4 inch
maturity. If they do become over mature the Plant spacing 14 to 18 inches
pea seed inside can be eaten. Pick peas from G. Planting Suggestions
the vine during the cool part of the day. Peppers need a warm soil to grow and good
N. Storage spacing for sunlight. If transplants are pur-
Edible podded peas can be stored 10 days in chased, they should be stocky, from 4 to 6
plastic bags in the refrigerator without a loss inches tall.
of quality. H. Fertilizer
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for
XV. Peppers each 100 square feet is recommended.
A. Food Value When the first fruits set, sidedress with
A pound of immature, sweet, green, raw 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate for high
peppers contain 93.4 percent water, 5.4 pH soils and ammonium nitrate for low pH
grams of protein, 0.9 gram of fat, 21.8 soils. The amount of fertilizer applied
grams of carbohydrates, and provides an should be based on a soil test report from
average of 100 calories. the University of Idaho Analytical Labora-
tory or a private testing laboratory. Plants
B. Description
may be over- or under-fertilized.
Peppers are native to the warmer parts of
I. Cultivation
America and were cultivated more than
2,000 years ago. They are classified as Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
sweet, mild, or hot, and are excellent for sal- sary, to remove other plant competition.
ads, seasoning in other foods and for baking. Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
stroy much of the root system and reduce
D. Seedbed
yield and quality.
Peppers grow best in a sandy loam soil.
J. Watering
Seedbed preparation should start when the
soil has sufficient moisture to form a mud Peppers have a water stress point of 60 per-
ball that will crumble into medium-sized cent. When the percent of water in soil
fragments. Cultivation should mix crop resi- drops below this level, the plant will start to

Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook


20 - 19
dehydrate and growth will be slowed down hot, growing season. They do not cross with
or stopped. The percent of water in the soil cucumbers, or watermelon, but will cross
can be estimated by taking a handful of soil with plants of the same species. Their flesh
at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a is coarse but can be baked, pureed, or used
ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and your to thicken soups.
hand feels like it has a film of water on it, C. Yield Per Person
the moisture will be 60 percent or above. If Each person will eat about 3 to 6 pounds of
the soil moisture is below 60 percent, the pumpkin during a growing season and use 3
film of water will not be felt on your hand, to 6 pounds for canning, freezing, or stor-
and it is time to water again. age. This will require a row of pumpkins 2
Plant growth can suffer from too much or to 3 feet long for garden use and 2 to 3 feet
too little water. The symptoms will be the for storage, canning, or freezing. Each foot
same. As the percentage of soil moisture of row space should produce about 1 pound
drops the oxygen level in the soil increases. of pumpkin.
Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to D. Seedbed
grow.
Pumpkins are adapted to most soils, but
K. Insects they grow best in a fertile soil rich in hu-
The following insects may cause problems: mus. Seedbed preparation should start when
green peach aphid, garden symphylan, flea the soil has sufficient moisture to form a
beetles, spider mites, and wireworms. mud ball that will crumble into medium-
L. Diseases sized fragments. Cultivation should mix
Pepper diseases include alfalfa mosaic virus, crop residues and organic matter in the top 7
tomato ring spot virus, anthracnose, to 8 inches of soil. It should destroy current
cercospora leaf spot, common mosaic, root weed growth and provide a small, granular-
rot, and verticillium wilt. type bed for transplanting. Overcultivated
M.Harvesting soil becomes powdery and has a tendency to
crust. The ideal pH for pumpkin growth is
Peppers can be harvested at any time after
from 5.5 to 7.0, but the pumpkin does well
they are large enough to use. Bell types usu-
in Idaho soil. Pumpkins grow best in full
ally are harvested when they are 3 to 4
sunlight, but they will do equally well in
inches long. When picking peppers, cut
light shade. For huge exhibition pumpkins,
them from the plant rather than pulling them
allow one fruit to develop per vine and wa-
off. The branches are extremely brittle and
ter heavily.
will break easily if pulled.
E. Seed Time
N. Storage
Seed pumpkins in Idaho 3 weeks before
The freezing point of peppers is 30°F. Store
transplanting when soil temperature is 65°F
in unheated basement or room at 45° to
or above. They also may be seeded directly
50°F. Humidity should be moderately high.
into the garden soil when the soil tempera-
Storage may be 2 to 3 weeks.
ture is 65°F or above. The pumpkin variety
XVI. Pumpkin planted should have an early maturity date
and be developed for weather conditions in
A. Food Value the area planted. The maturity date should
A pound of pumpkin contains 90.2 percent be 70 to 110 days after transplanting. Pump-
water, 4.5 grams of protein, 1.4 grams of kins are killed by very light frosts. Pump-
fat, 35.8 grams of protein, 35.8 grams of kins love warm soil. The use of plastic
carbohydrates, and an average of 150 calories. mulches is common.
B. Description F. Planting Specifications:
Pumpkins are native to America. They are Seed per foot 2
sensitive to frost but tolerant of cool moist Ounce per foot 0.5
environments. They need a warm but not a Row width 72 to 120 inches
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 20
Germination 6 to 10 days L. Diseases
Seed depth 1 to 1 1/2 inches Disease problems include aster yellows,
Plant spacing 40 to 60 inches root rot, and storage rot.
G. Planting Suggestions M.Harvesting
Pumpkins need a warm soil to grow but not Pumpkins can be harvested any time after
extremely hot days. They are sensitive to their rinds are hard and their skins turn gold
frost. in color. Harvest before they are injured by
H. Fertilizer hard frost. Some types have the best quality
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for if they are harvested after their vines are
each 100 square feet is recommended. One killed by frost. When pumpkins are cut from
week after blossoming begins, sidedress the vine, leave 3 or 4 inches of stem at-
with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate if tached to the fruit. Pumpkins without stems
the soil pH is high or ammonium nitrate if it do not store well.
is low. The amount of fertilizer applied N. Storage
should be based on a soil test report from Cure pumpkins after a light frost kills the
the University of Idaho Analytical Labora- vines or by cutting the stems and allowing
tory or a private testing laboratory. Plants them to lie in the garden for a week to 10
may be over- or under-fertilized. days. Pumpkins can cure inside a house for
I. Cultivation the same period at 75°F. They may then be
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces- stored in a home cellar or basement at an
sary, to remove other plant competition. average temperature of 55°F with a moder-
Deep cultivation close to the plants will de- ately high humidity. High quality cured
stroy much of the root system and reduce pumpkins will store in good condition
yield and quality. If it becomes necessary to through the fall and early winter months.
cultivate, penetrate the soil no deeper than 1
inch. XVII. Radish
J. Watering A. Food Value
Pumpkin roots are shallow. Their water A pound of radishes contains 94.5 percent
stress point is 60 percent. When the percent water, 4.5 grams of protein, 0.5 gram of fat,
of water in soil drops below this level, the 15.3 grams of carbohydrates, and 77 calories.
plant will start to dehydrate, and growth will B. Description
be slowed down or stopped. The percent of Radishes are native to Europe and Asia.
water in the soil can be estimated by taking They are cold hardy but will not withstand
a handful of soil at the 6-inch depth and high heat. During hot weather the roots be-
squeezing it into a ball in your hand. If it come pungent, and the plants produce seed
forms a ball and your hand feels like it has a stalks.
film of water on it the soil moisture will be C. Yield Per Person
60 percent or above. If soil moisture is below
It is estimated that each person will eat from
60 percent, the film of water will not be felt
2 to 3 pounds of radishes during a growing
on your hand, and it is time to water again.
season. Each foot of row space should pro-
Plant growth can suffer from too much or duce approximately 0.67 pound of radishes.
too little water. The symptoms will be the Plant about 3 to 5 feet of row per person.
same. As the percentage of soil moisture
D. Seedbed
drops the oxygen level in the soil increases.
Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to Radishes grow best in sandy loam and peat
grow. soils. Heavy clay soils can be improved by
the addition of organic matter. Seedbed
K. Insects
preparation should start when the soil has
The following insects may create problems: sufficient moisture to form a mud ball that
aphids, cucumber beetle, slugs, spider mites, will crumble into medium-sized fragments.
and squash bugs.
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 21
Cultivation should mix crop residues and Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
organic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches soil. stroy much of the root system and reduce
It should destroy current weed growth and yield and quality.
provide a small granular-type bed for trans- J. Watering
planting. Overcultivated soil becomes pow- Radishes have a water stress point of 60
dery and has a tendency to crust. The ideal percent. When the percent of water in soil
pH for radish growth is from 6.0 to 7.0, but drops below this level, the plant will start to
radishes do well in Idaho soil, which ranges dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down
from 7.0 to 8.0. or stopped. The percent of water in the soil
E. Seed Time can be estimated by taking a handful of soil
The best time to seed radishes is 6 to 8 at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a
weeks before the last killing frost in the ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and your
spring when soil temperature is 50°F or hand feels like it has a film of water on it,
above. The variety planted should have an the soil moisture will be 60 percent or
early maturity date and be developed for above. If the soil moisture is below 60 per-
weather conditions in the area planted. cent, the film of water will not be felt on
Maturity date should be 20 to 50 days. your hand, and it is time to water again.
F. Planting Specifications: Plant growth can suffer from too much or
Ounce per foot 0.02 too little water. Symptoms will be the same.
Seed per foot 14 to 16 As the percentage of soil moisture drops,
Row width 6 to 12 inches the oxygen level in the soil increases. Plants
Germination 3 to 10 days need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow.
Seed depth 1/2 inch K. Insects
G. Planting Suggestions The following insects may cause problems:
Radishes need a cool soil to grow in and cabbage aphid, turnip aphid, cabbage mag-
good spacing for sunlight. Their frost toler- got, cutworms, army worms, black cut-
ance is good. Make successive plantings ev- worms, diamond back moth, flea beetles,
ery 10 to 14 days, beginning in the spring as and wireworms.
soon as the soil can be worked and a month L. Diseases
before frost in the fall. Radishes can be Radish disease problems include black rot.
mixed with carrot, beet, and parsnips to M.Harvesting
mark the row of these vegetables that grow Radishes can be harvested as soon as the
slower. roots reach edible size (1 to 2 inch) and be-
H. Fertilizer fore becoming tough and pithy. They nor-
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for mally mature in 20 to 30 days.
each 100 square feet is recommended. Fer- N. Storage
tilizers should be applied to the soil before Storage life of radishes is limited to 5 to 6
seeding to ensure its availability to plants days in the refrigerator if stored in plastic
during the short growing season. Over-fer- bags with holes punched for air circulation
tilization can result in excessive top growth space. Remove tops at 1/2 inch from radish
with no root enlargement. The amount of and clean root before storage.
fertilizer applied should be based on a soil
test report from the University of Idaho XVIII. Summer Squash
Analytical Laboratory or a private testing
A. Food Value
laboratory. Plants may be over- or under-
fertilized. A pound of immature raw summer squash
contains 94.0 percent water, 5 grams of pro-
I. Cultivation
tein, 0.05 gram of fat, 19.1 grams of carbo-
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces- hydrates, and 81 calories.
sary, to remove other plant competition.

Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook


20 - 22
B. Description Seed depth 1 inch
Summer squash are native to Central Plant spacing 6 to 24 inches
American and were used extensively by In- G. Planting Suggestions
dians for food. Summer squash have whitish Summer squash needs a warm soil to grow
or yellow flesh and are picked in the sum- and good spacing for sunlight. If transplants
mer while immature. They may be vining, are purchased, they should be stocky. Bees
semivining, or bush types. Squash will are needed for pollination.
cross-pollinate with other squash, pumpkin, H. Fertilizer
or gourds within the same species, but don’t
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for
cross-pollinate with cucumbers or water-
each 100 square feet is recommended.
melon. They grow well in Idaho.
When the plant begins to spread out,
C. Yield Per Person sidedress with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium
It is estimated that each person will eat from sulfate for high pH soils and ammonium ni-
6 to 9 pounds of squash during a growing trate for low pH soils. The amount of fertil-
season and need an additional 6 to 9 pounds izer applied should be based on a soil test
for storage, canning, or freezing. This will report from the University of Idaho Analyti-
require a row of squash 4 to 6 feet long. cal Laboratory or a private testing labora-
Each foot of row space should produce tory.
about 1.5 pounds of summer squash. I. Cultivation
D. Seedbed Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
Summer squash grow best on fertile, well- sary, to remove other plant competition.
drained soil, well supplied with organic Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
matter. Seedbed preparation should start stroy much of the root system and reduce
when the soil has sufficient moisture to yield and quality.
form a mud ball that will crumble into me- J. Watering
dium-sized fragments. Cultivation should
Summer squashes have a water stress point
mix crop residues and organic matter in the
of 65 percent. When the percent of water in
top 7 to 8 inches of soil. It should destroy
soil drops below this level, the plant will
current weed growth and provide a small
start to dehydrate, and growth will be
granular-type bed for transplanting. Over-
slowed down or stopped. The percent of wa-
cultivated soil becomes powdery and has a
ter in the soil can be estimated by taking a
tendency to crust. The ideal pH for summer
handful of soil at the 6-inch depth and
squash growth is 6.0 to 7.5, but it does well
squeezing it into a ball in your hand. If it
in Idaho soil, which ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
forms a ball and your hand feels like it has a
E. Seed Time heavy film of water on it, the soil moisture
The best time to seed summer squash in a will be 65 percent or above. If the soil mois-
container is 3 to 4 weeks before transplant- ture is below 65 percent, the film of water
ing. Seed direct into soil or transplant when will not be felt on your hand, and it will be
temperature is 65°F or above. The variety of time to water again.
squash planted should have an early matu- Plant growth can suffer from too much or
rity date and be developed for weather con- too little water. The symptoms will be the
ditions in the area planted. Maturity date same. As the percentage of soil moisture
should be 50 to 60 days after transplanting. drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases.
Sow squash outdoors when night tempera- Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to
ture no longer falls below 55°F. grow.
F. Planting Specifications: K. Insects
Seed per foot 4 to 6 The following insects may create problems:
Row width 26 to 60 inches bean aphid, melon aphid, potato aphid,
Germination 3 to 12 days nitidulid beetles, squash bug, and wireworms.

Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook


20 - 23
L. Diseases does well in Idaho soils, which have a pH of
Diseases include aster yellows, black rot, 7.0 to 8.0.
curly top, and root rot. E. Seed Time
M.Harvesting The best time to seed corn is in May when
Summer squash can be harvested any time soil temperature is 50°F or above and air
the fruits reach a desired size but before the temperature averages 65°F or above. Corn is
squash forms hard seed or rinds. Break fruit a tender crop and should be planted after the
from the vine, leaving a piece of stem with last frost. The warmer the temperature, the
the fruit. faster the corn grows and matures. The vari-
ety planted should have an early maturity
XIX. Sweet Corn date and be developed for weather condi-
A. Food Value tions in the area planted.
A pound of raw, white, or yellow sweet F. Planting Specifications:
corn consists of about 45 percent cob and 55 Seed per foot 4 to 6 inches
percent edible. The kernels contain about Row width 30 to 36 inches
72.7 percent water and provide an average Germination 6 to 10 days
of 240 calories, 8.7 grams of protein, 2.5 Ounce per foot 0.16
grams of fat, and 55.1 grams of carbohy- Seed depth 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inches
drates. Plant space 10 to 12 inches
B. Description G. Planting Suggestions
Corn is an annual grass, native to the Sweet corn needs a warm soil and good
Americas and differing from other types of spacing for sunlight. It is wind-pollinated so
corn by the retention of large amounts of plants should be in 3 or more short rows,
sugar in the kernels during the milk stage of rather than one long row. Varieties should
maturity. Its skin is slightly thinner than be separated because cross-pollination be-
other types. Kernel color ranges from white tween low-sugar plants and high-sugar
to yellow. There are about 2,000 sweet corn plants reduces the sweetness of the high-
varieties in existence. sugar corn.
C. Yield Per Person H. Fertilizer
It is estimated that each person will require Corn has a high N requirement. The princi-
from 10 to 15 feet of plants in a row for pal application of N and other fertilizers
fresh use and an additional 30 to 50 feet for should be broadcast before planting with, if
storage, canning, or freezing. Each foot of necessary, a sidedressing 3 inches from the
row space should produce about 0.3 pound plant at the corn four-leaf stage. The amount
of corn. of fertilizer applied should be based on a
D. Seedbed soil test report from the University of Idaho
Analytical Laboratory or a private soil test-
Soil texture can vary for sweet corn produc-
ing laboratory. Plants stunted by a lack of
tion. A sandy loam is best, but corn can be
nutrients seldom recover or produce up to
grown in clay or loam soils also. The soil
their potential.
cultivation should be conducted when the
moisture in the soil will allow formation of I. Cultivation
a mud ball that will crumble into pieces un- Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
der finger pressure. Cultivation should mix sary, to remove other plant competition.
crop residues and organic matter in the top 7 Deep cultivation will destroy much of the
to 8 inches of soil, destroy current weed root system and reduce yield and quality.
growth, and provide a granular-type bed for The number of suckers a sweet corn plant
seeding. Overcultivated soil becomes pow- produces depends on the variety of the corn.
dery and has a tendency to crust. The ideal Suckers should not be removed. Their re-
pH for corn growth is from 6.0 to 7.0, but it moval does not increase yields but may re-
duce them.
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 24
J. Watering B. Description
Corn has a water stress point of 60 percent. Chard is native of the Mediterranean area. It
When the percent of water in soil drops be- is a relative of the beet and is grown for its
low this level, the plant will start to dehy- tender vitamin rich leaves. The leaves and
drate and growth will be slowed down or petioles are cooked to provide a pot herb
stopped. The percent of water in the soil can similar to spinach.
be estimated by taking a handful of soil at C. Yield Per Person
the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a ball It is estimated that each person will eat from
in your hand. If it forms a ball and your 1.5 to 3 pounds of fresh chard during a
hand feels like it has a film of water on it, growing season and will use an additional 3
the soil moisture will be 60 percent or to 4.5 pounds for canning or freezing. Each
above. If the soil moisture is below 60 per- foot of row space should produce about 0.85
cent, the film of water will not be felt on pound of chard. From 2 to 4 feet of row
your hand, and it is time to water again. space per person should be planted for fresh
Plant growth can suffer from too much or too use during the growing season and an addi-
little water. Symptoms will be the same. tional 4 to 6 feet for canning or freezing.
K. Insects D. Seedbed
The following insects may be a problem in Chard is widely adapted to different soils as
sweet corn: corn ear worm, cutworm, army long as they are rich, of good texture, and
worm, wireworm, root worm, slug, aphids, well drained. Seedbed preparation should
spider mites, earwigs, and cucumber beetles. start when the soil has sufficient moisture to
L. Diseases form a mud ball that will crumble into me-
Root stock, ear rot, maize dwarf mosaic, dium-sized fragments. Cultivation should
seed rot, seedling blight, and smut are com- mix crop residues and organic matter in the
mon diseases of corn. top 7 to 8 inches of soil, destroy current
M.Harvesting weed growth, and provide a small granular-
Depending on temperatures, sweet corn type bed for transplanting. Overcultivated
generally ripens in 22 to 24 days after soil becomes powdery and has a tendency to
silking. For eating, the silks are brown, and crust. The ideal pH for chard growth is from
the ear fills the husk. The liquid squeezed 6.0 to 7.5, and it does well in Idaho soil,
from a ripe kernel is milky; from an imma- which is 7.0 to 8.0.
ture kernel it is watery; and from an E. Seed Time
overmature kernel, solid or creamy. Prime The best time to seed chard is as soon as the
eating quality lasts about 4 to 5 days before soil can be cultivated in the spring, 2 to 4
the sugar starts to turn to starch. Pick corn weeks before the last killing frost. Minimum
when the sugar is at its maximum. Canning soil temperature for planting is 50°F or
corn can be picked when it is in the cream above. The variety of chard planted should
stage. Sweet corn loses quality quickly after have an early maturity date and be devel-
picking, especially at high temperatures. oped for weather conditions in the area
Process as soon as possible after harvesting. planted. Maturity date should be 55 to 65
Pull cobs from the stocks with a downward days after planting.
motion and a twist to the side. F. Planting Specifications:
N. Storage Seed per foot 6 to 10
Refrigerate at 35° to 40°F for 2 to 3 days. Row width 18 to 24 inches
Germination 7 to 10 days
XX. Swiss Chard Seed depth 1 inch
A. Food Value Plant spacing 4 to 8 inches
A pound of chard contains about 3.7 percent G. Planting Suggestions
water, 8.2 grams of protein, 0.9 gram of fat, Chard can be planted in the garden or in a
15.0 grams of carbohydrates, and 82 calories. greenhouse for later transplanting.
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 25
H. Fertilizer N. Storage
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for Before the first hard freeze, plants can be
each 100 square feet is recommended. transplanted into containers. Store the con-
When the plants are one-third grown, tainerized plants in a cool place, and water
sidedress with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium lightly to prevent wilting. Leaves can be
sulfate per 10 feet of row. Amount of fertil- harvested into the winter months.
izer applied should be based on a soil test
report from the University of Idaho Analyti- XXI. Tomatoes
cal Laboratory or a private testing labora- A. Food Value
tory. Plants may be over- or under-fertilized. A pound of tomatoes contains about 93.5
I. Cultivation percent water, 4.5 grams of protein, 0.8
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces- gram of fat, and 19.4 grams of carbohy-
sary, to remove other plant competition. drates. The fruits are high in vitamin A, B1,
Deep cultivation close to the plants will de- B2, and C, and provide an average of 91
stroy much of the root system and reduce calories per pound.
yield and quality. B. Description
J. Watering Tomatoes are native to the Andes Moun-
Chard has a water stress point of 55 percent. tains in South America. They are a warm
When the percent of water in soil drops be- season crop and rank second in popularity
low this level, the plant will start to dehy- among the vegetable crops grown in the
drate, and growth will be slowed down or United States. They are classified according
stopped. The percent of water in the soil can to their growth patterns into three groups:
be estimated by taking a handful of soil at Determinant, semideterminant, and
the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a ball indeterminant. Determinant plant vines
in your hand. If it forms a ball, and your grow 12 to 18 inches long, and stop fruiting
hand feels like it has a film of water on it, when the vines stop growing. Semideter-
the soil moisture will be 55 percent or minant plants are similar but grow 18 to 24
above. If the soil moisture is below 55 per- inches. The vines of indeterminant plants
cent, the soil will not feel moist on your continue to grow and fruit is set indefinitely.
hand, and it is time to water again. C. Yield Per Person
Plant growth can suffer from too much or Tomatoes grow best in a fertile, sandy, well-
too little water. Symptoms will be the same. drained, loam soil. Seedbed preparation
As the percentage of soil moisture drops, should start when the soil has sufficient
the oxygen level in the soil increases. Plants moisture to form a mud ball that will
need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow. crumble into medium-sized fragments. Cul-
K. Insects tivation should mix crop residues and or-
The following insects may cause problems: ganic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches of soil.
aphids, blister beetles, looper, lygus bugs, It should destroy current weed growth and
cutworms, serpentine leaf miner, western provide a small granular-type bed for trans-
spotted cucumber beetles, and wireworms. planting. Overcultivated soil becomes pow-
L. Diseases dery and has a tendency to crust. The pH for
Top virus is the main chard disease. tomato growth is from 5.5 to 7.5, but it does
well in Idaho soil, which ranges from 7.0 to
M.Harvesting
8.0.
Chard can be harvested throughout an entire
E. Seed Time
3-month growing season. Plants removed at
thinning time can be used in salads. Cut The best time to seed tomatoes is 6 to 8
outer leaves first about 1 inch from the soil weeks before transplanting when soil tem-
surface with a sharp knife. Care should be perature is 65°F or above. The variety of
taken to ensure the new inner stems and tomatoes planted should have an early ma-
growing point are not damaged. turity date and be developed for weather
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 26
conditions in the area planted. Maturity date dehydrate and growth will be slowed down
should be 60 to 80 days after transplanting. or stopped. The percent of water in the soil
Two or three different varieties can be can be estimated by taking a handful of soil
planted to obtain ripening at different times. at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a
One series of plants could be early bearers ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and your
and another series that mature later could be hand feels like it has a film of water on it,
used for the main crop. the soil moisture will be 65 percent or
F. Planting Specifications: above. If the soil moisture is below 65 per-
Seed per foot Use transplants cent, the film of water will not be felt on
Row width 36 to 60 inches your hand, and it will be time to water again.
Germination 6 to 14 days Plant growth can suffer from too much or
Seed depth 1/4 to 1/2 inch too little water. Symptoms will be the same.
Plant spacing 18 to 36 inches As the percentage of soil moisture drops,
G. Planting Suggestions the oxygen level in the soil increases. Plants
need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow.
Tomatoes need a warm soil to grow and
good spacing for sunlight. If transplants are K. Insects
purchased, they should be stocky and from The following insects may cause problems:
4 to 6 inches tall. If you plan to grow your green peach aphid, garden symphylan, flea
own transplants, seed in your greenhouse or beetles, spider mites, wireworms, and to-
house 5 to 7 weeks before transplanting. Put mato horn worm.
plants in the garden 10 days after the last L. Diseases
expected killing frost. Hot caps or other pro- Tomato diseases include anthracnose, yel-
tection devices may allow earlier transplant- low aster, bacterial canker, blossom end rot,
ing. Tomatoes normally do not set fruit be- curly top, early blight, fruit rot, late blight,
low 58°F or above 85°F and must have 6 or leaf mold mosaic, root-rot nematode, spot-
more hours each day of direct sunlight. ted wilt virus (tip blight), streak, and wilt.
Transplants should not have fruit on them M.Harvesting
when planted out as the fruit will stunt the
For best flavor tomato fruits should be har-
plants’ growth and development.
vested when they are fully ripe and firm.
H. Fertilizer The best ripening temperature is 65°F. To-
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for matoes will ripen to high quality indoors if
each 100 square feet is recommended. picked as the red color first shows. Remove
When the first fruits set, sidedress with stems from harvested tomatoes.
1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate for high N. Storage
pH soils and ammonium nitrate for low pH
The freezing point of tomatoes is 30°F.
soils. The amount of fertilizer applied
Store in unheated basement or room tem-
should be based on a soil test report from
perature of from 55° to 70°F. Humidity
the University of Idaho Analytical Labora-
should be moderately low. Tomatoes may
tory or a private testing laboratory. Plants
be stored for 4 to 6 weeks. For fall storage,
may be over- or under-fertilized.
pick all green fruit that is nearly full size
I. Cultivation and wrap individually in newspaper and
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces- store at 50° to 60°F. They will ripen slowly
sary, to remove other plant competition. providing a longer eating season. Green
Deep cultivation close to the plants will de- fruit will ripen more quickly when enclosed
stroy much of the root system and reduce in a bag or box with an apple or banana.
yield and quality.
J. Watering XXII. Turnips
Tomatoes have a water stress point of 65 A. Food Value
percent. When the percent of water in soil A pound of turnips contains about 93.6 per-
drops below this level, the plant will start to cent water, 3.6 grams of protein, 0.9 gram
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 27
of fat, 22.2 grams of carbohydrates, and 104 gested that successive plantings be made
calories. every 10 to 14 days beginning in spring as
B. Description soon as the soil can be worked and before the
Turnips are native to western Asia. They are daytime temperature is expected to average
cold hardy but will not withstand heat, and 80°F or above. Turnips can be mixed with
during hot weather roots become bitter and seed for carrots, beets, and parsnips to mark
pithy. Turnips are grown for their tender, the row of these vegetables that grow slower.
crisp roots, but the leaves or greens of tur- H. Fertilizer
nips are also good cooked. A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for
C. Yield Per Person each 100 square feet is recommended.
It is estimated that each person will eat from Sidedress the plants with 1.5 ounces of am-
3 to 6 pounds of turnips during a growing monium sulfate for high pH soils or ammo-
season. Each foot of row space should pro- nium nitrate for low pH soils per 10 feet of
duce approximately 0.5 to 1 pound of turnips. row when plants are about one-third grown.
Plant from 5 to 10 feet of row per person. Over fertilization can result in excessive top
growth with no root enlargement. The
D. Seedbed
amount of fertilizer applied should be based
Turnips grow best in sandy loam and peat on a soil test report from the University of
soils. Heavy clay soils can be improved by Idaho Analytical Laboratory or a private
the addition of organic matter. Seedbed testing laboratory. Plants may be over- or
preparation should start when the soil has under-fertilized.
sufficient moisture to form a mud ball that
I. Cultivation
will crumble into medium-sized fragments.
Cultivation should mix crop residues and Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
organic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches of sary, to remove other plant competition.
soil. It should destroy current weed growth Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
and provide a small granular-type bed for stroy much of the root system and reduce
transplanting. Overcultivated soil becomes yield and quality. Thin by leaving 1 to 2
powdery and has a tendency to crust. The inches between plants. Plants removed dur-
ideal pH for turnip growth is 5.5 to 7.0, but ing thinning can be eaten.
it does well in Idaho soil, which ranges from J. Watering
7.0 to 8.0. Turnips have a water stress point of 60 per-
E. Seed Time cent. When the percent of water in soil
The best time to seed turnips is 6 to 8 weeks drops below this level, the plant will start to
before the last killing frost in the spring dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down
when soil temperature is 50°F or above. The or stopped. The percent of water in the soil
variety planted should have an early matu- can be estimated by taking a handful of soil
rity date and be developed for weather con- at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a
ditions in the area planted. Maturity date ball in your hand. If it forms a ball, and your
should be 45 to 60 days. hand feels like it has a film of water on it,
the soil moisture will be 60 percent or
F. Planting Specifications:
above. If the soil moisture is below 60 per-
Ounce per foot 0.01 cent, the film of water will not be felt on
Seed per foot 10 to 15 your hand, and it is time to water again.
Row width 15 to 18 inches
Plant growth can suffer from too much or
Germination 3 to 10 days
too little water. The symptoms will be the
Seed depth 1/2 inch
same. As the percentage of soil moisture
Plant space 4 to 6 inches
drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases.
G. Planting Suggestions
K. Insects
Turnips need a cool soil to grow in. They
The following insects may cause problems:
have excellent frost tolerance. It is sug-
cabbage aphid, turnip aphid, cabbage root
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 28
maggot, cutworms, army worms, black cut- crumble into medium-sized fragments. Cul-
worms, diamond back moth, flea beetles, tivation should mix crop residues and or-
and wireworms. ganic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches of soil.
L. Diseases It should destroy current weed growth and
Turnip disease problems include black root provide a small, granular-type bed for trans-
rot, club root, and powdery mildew. planting. Overcultivated soil becomes pow-
dery and has a tendency to crust. The ideal
M.Harvesting
pH for watermelon growth is from 6.0 to
Turnips can be harvested as soon as the 7.5, but it does well in Idaho soil, which
roots reach edible size (2 to 3 inches) and ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
before becoming bitter and pithy. They nor-
E. Seed Time
mally mature in 45 to 60 days. Pull or cut
off tops above the crown. The best time to seed watermelons in Idaho
is 3 weeks after the last killing frost. When
N. Storage
transplanting, the soil temperature should be
Storage life of turnips can be extended into 65°F or above. The variety of watermelons
the fall and winter by leaving them in the planted should have an early maturity date
ground and covering them with a mulch to and be developed for weather conditions in
prevent them from freezing in the ground. the area planted. The maturity date should
For pit storage the temperature should be as be 80 to 100 days after transplanting.
near 32°F as possible under moist air condi-
F. Planting Specifications:
tions.
Seed per foot 2 to 3
XXIII. Watermelon Ounce per foot 0.05
Row width 72 to 84 inches
A. Food Value
Germination 3 to 12 days
A pound of raw watermelon contains 92.6 Seed depth 1 inch
percent water, 2.3 grams of protein, 0.9 Plant spacing 12 to 24 inches
gram of fat, 29.0 grams of carbohydrates,
G. Planting Suggestions
and 118 calories.
Watermelons need a warm soil to grow and
B. Description
good spacing for sunlight for high sugar
Watermelons are a native of Africa. The content and flavor. If transplants are pur-
plants have separate male and female flow- chased, they should be stocky.
ers on the same vine and are cross-polli-
H. Fertilizer
nated. They do not cross-pollinate with cu-
cumbers, squash, or pumpkins. Watermelon A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for
are difficult to grow in many parts of Idaho. each 100 square feet is recommended. One
They need high temperatures and a long week after blossoming begins, sidedress
growing season. with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate for
pH soils or ammonium nitrate for low pH
C. Yield Per Person
soils per 10 feet of row. The amount of fer-
It is estimated that each person will eat from tilizer applied should be based on a soil test
3 to 6 pounds of watermelon during a grow- report from the University of Idaho Analyti-
ing season. This will require a row of mel- cal Laboratory or a private testing labora-
ons 6 to 12 feet long. Each foot of row tory. Plants may be over- or under-fertilized.
space should produce about 0.5 pound of
I. Cultivation
watermelons.
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces-
D. Seedbed
sary, to remove other plant competition.
Watermelons are adapted to most soils but Deep cultivation close to the plants will de-
grow best in a fertile, light, sandy soil with stroy much of the root system and reduce
large amounts of compost. Seedbed prepara- yield and quality. If it becomes necessary to
tion should start when the soil has sufficient cultivate, penetrate the soil no deeper than 1
moisture to form a mud ball that will inch.
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 29
J. Watering types: vining, semivining, and bush. Squash
Watermelons have a water stress point of 65 will cross-pollinate with other squash,
percent. When the percent of water in soil pumpkins, and gourds within the same spe-
drops below this level, the plant will start to cies. They have separate male and female
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down flowers on the same plant. The fruits, which
or stopped. The percent of water in the soil vary widely in shape and color, may be
can be estimated by taking a handful of soil baked, boiled, or used for pie filling.
at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a C. Yield Per Person
ball in your hand. If it forms a ball, and your Each person will eat about 6 to 9 pounds of
hand feels like it has a film of water on it, squash during a growing season and need 6
the soil moisture will be 65 percent or to 9 pounds for canning or freezing. This
above. If the soil moisture is below 65 per- will require a row of squash 12 to 18 feet
cent, the film of water will not be felt on long. Each foot of row space produces about
your hand, and it is time to water again. 1 pound of squash.
Plant growth can suffer from too much or D. Seedbed
too little water. The symptoms will be the Squash is adapted to most soils but grows
same. As the percentage of soil moisture best in a fertile soil rich in humus. Seedbed
drops, the oxygen level in the soil increases. preparation should start when the soil has
Plants need water, oxygen, and nutrients to sufficient moisture to form a mud ball that
grow. will crumble into medium-sized fragments.
K. Insects Cultivation should mix crop residues and
The following insects may cause problems: organic matter in the top 7 to 8 inches of
aphids, cucumber beetle, cabbage looper, soil. It should destroy current weed growth
spider mites, and wireworms. and provide a small, granular type bed for
L. Diseases transplanting. Overcultivated soil becomes
Diseases include curly top, leaf spot, and wilt. powdery and has a tendency to crust. The
ideal pH for squash growth is 6.0 to 7.5.
M.Harvesting
Squash does well in Idaho soil, which
Watermelon is ripe when the vine tendril ranges from 7.0 to 8.0.
next to the fruit yellows and dries, when the
E. Seed Time
underside of the melon next to the ground
takes on a yellow tinge, and when thumping The time to seed squash in Idaho is 3 weeks
with a finger causes a dull rather than a before transplanting when soil temperature
sharp sound. Cut the melon off the vine, is 65°F. The variety of squash planted should
leaving a short stem on the fruit. Pulling the have an early maturity date and be developed
stem from the fruit may damage the fruit. for weather conditions in the area planted.
Most melon cultivates form an abscission Maturity date should be 85 to 120 days after
layer at maturity, and the stem loosens from transplanting. Squash may also be seeded
the fruit. When the stem is nearly loose the directly into the soil 2 to 3 weeks after the
melon is said to be at the full slip stage. last killing frost. Squash thrives in warm soil,
and the use of plastic mulches is common.
XXIV. Winter Squash F. Planting Specifications:
A. Food Value Seed per foot 1 to 2
A pound of cooked winter squash contains Ounce per foot 0.05
about 81.4 percent water, 8.2 grams of pro- Row width 72 to 120 inches
tein, 1.8 grams of fat, 69.9 grams of carbo- Germination 6 to 10 days
hydrates, and 286 calories. Seed depth 1 inch
Plant spacing 12 to 24 inches
B. Description
G. Planting Suggestions
Winter squash is native to America and was
grown by the Indians. There are three main Squash needs a warm soil to grow in, but
not an extremely hot growing season.
Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook
20 - 30
Squash tolerates partial shade and is some- M.Harvesting
times interplanted with corn. Harvest winter squash when fully mature.
H. Fertilizer Indications of maturity are a hard rind and a
A preplant fertilizer of 0.2 pound of N for solid exterior coloring. The acorn types are
each 100 square feet is recommended. One harvested when a yellow, orange color has
week after blossoming begins, sidedress developed on the fruit where it is in contact
with 1 1/2 ounces of ammonium sulfate for with the soil. In Idaho, the growing season
high pH soils or ammonium nitrate for low is short at best, and most winter squash are
pH soils. The amount of fertilizer applied harvested when the vine has been killed by
should be based on a soil test report from frost but before a hard frost. To harvest, cut
the University of Idaho Analytical Labora- the stem with a knife 2 inches from the fruit.
tory or a private testing laboratory. Plants Let the squash cure in the sun for 1 or more
may be over- or under-fertilized. weeks or cure inside house at a temperature
I. Cultivation of 75°F for 1 week or more before storage.
Cultivation should be shallow, when neces- N. Storage
sary, to remove other plant competition. When cured, store in a home cellar or base-
Deep cultivation close to the plants will de- ment at 55°F. The humidity should be mod-
stroy much of the root system and reduce erately low. Properly cured and stored
yield and quality. If it becomes necessary to squash should remain in good condition
cultivate, penetrate the soil no deeper than throughout the winter.
1 inch. Squash plants provide good ground
cover and will shade out most weeds as they Further Reading
mature.
J. Watering
Booklets and Pamphlets
Winter squash has a water stress point of 60
percent. When the percent of water in soil CIS 292 Blossom-End Rot of Tomatoes (25¢)
drops below this level, the plant will start to CIS 1041 Conduct Your Own Garden Research ($2.00)
dehydrate, and growth will be slowed down CIS 660 Gardening: Growing Beets, Carrots, Radishes
or stopped. The percent of water in the soil and Other Root Crops (50¢)
can be estimated by taking a handful of soil CIS 661 Gardening: Growing Cole Crops (25¢)
at the 6-inch depth and squeezing it into a CIS 756 Gardening: Growing Cucumbers (35¢)
ball in your hand. If it forms a ball and your CIS 686 Gardening: Growing Garlic (25¢)
hand feels like it has a film of water on it, CIS 691 Gardening: Growing Lettuce, Spinach, and
the soil moisture will be 60 percent or Swiss Chard (35¢)
above. If the soil moisture is below 60 per- CIS 659 Gardening: Growing Peppers (25¢)
cent, the film of water will not be felt on CIS 723 Gardening: Growing Squash and Pumpkin
your hand, and it is time to water again. (35¢)
Plant growth can suffer from too much to CIS 800 Growing Vegetable Seedlings for
little water. The symptoms will be the same. Transplanting (50¢)
As the percentage of soil moisture drops, PNW 495 Grow Your Own: Beans and Peas ($1.00)
the oxygen level in the soil increases. Plants BUL 775 Planning an Idaho Vegetable Garden ($4.00)
need water, oxygen, and nutrients to grow. CIS 1000 Potato Production in the Home Garden (50¢)
K. Insects PNW 497 Short-Season Vegetable Gardening ($2.00)
The following insects may cause problems: CIS 910 Sweet Corn Production for the Small-Market
aphids, cucumber beetle, slugs, spider mites, Grower and Home Gardener (50¢)
wireworms, and squash bugs. CIS 667 Tomatoes for the Home Garden (35¢)
L. Diseases CIS 755 Vegetable Gardening: Planning and
Squash diseases include aster yellows, black Preparing the Site (35¢)
rot, curly top virus, root rot, and storage CIS 803 Vegetable Gardening: Growing Asparagus
rots. (35¢)

Chapter 20, The Idaho Master Gardener Program Handbook


20 - 31