Growing zucchini in the open field

* The calculations use the average data for the World. Over the past 10-15 years, the popularity of zucchini among Russian consumers has increased significantly. The reason for this is the excellent dietary properties of this plant: a favorable ratio of potassium and sodium salts in zucchini, a small amount of coarse dietary fiber, low calorie content, the presence of proteins, minerals, vitamins. Various dietary dishes are prepared from zucchini, which have anti-allergic and anti-anemic properties. Processing zucchini is carried out both in industrial and at home. In addition, zucchini is a precocious crop with relatively simple agricultural technology, it tolerates transportation well and can be stored for a long time.

On one bush of zucchini, 8-10 fruits of commodity condition can grow, and the yield per hectare when creating optimal growing conditions reaches 80 tons.

Growing zucchini can be a profitable business subject to agricultural technology. The cost of land rental depends on the region and the size of the leased area and can range from 500 rubles to several thousand rubles per hectare. Although zucchini is a drought-tolerant crop, it requires watering, so it is advisable to choose plots with water supply. A farm engaged in the industrial cultivation of zucchini must have at its disposal trucks for transporting crops, as well as equipment for plowing, harrowing, husking, planting and harvesting plants.

Neutral soils or sandy loam soils with mineral top dressing are best suited for growing zucchini. Heavy clay soils, acid peat soils are not suitable for this plant.

The best predecessors of zucchini are potatoes, cabbage, onions, root crops, legumes and green crops. Do not grow zucchini after cucumbers or other pumpkin.

To prepare the soil for planting zucchini, in the fall they make plowing of the earth to a depth of 20-25 centimeters. After the late harvested crops, the land is cultivated with heavy disc harrows, and in the clogged areas, peeling is carried out with plow cultivators. Ridges are cut from the fall using town planners or furrows. In spring, ridges are cultivated with a harrow, thus achieving not only loosening of the surface soil layer, but also restoration of the profile of furrows.

Mineral fertilizers are partially applied in the fall, the rest - before sowing. Best zucchini perceives manure or humus in combination with mineral fertilizers. Sour soils lime to bring the reaction closer to neutral.

When choosing a variety of zucchini, you need to pay attention to the country of origin. Most of the hybrids sold on the Russian market were introduced abroad. Domestic zucchini varieties are better suited for cultivation in the central and northern regions of Russia, while imported varieties are better grown in the southern ones, since they have a longer growing season. Russian zucchini can be stored for a long time and are well suited for pickling and pickling, but since they ripen quickly, the fruits should be removed from the bush immediately upon reaching ripeness.

Grade "Gribovsky 37" is a very common variety of zucchini, belongs to the mid-early, the period from germination to the first harvest takes 46-57 days. The fruit has a white color and a cylindrical shape. Resistant to disease. The use is universal.

Apollo F1 is an early hybrid. The ripening period is 38-41 days. This is a high-yielding variety, fruiting well in any weather. The plant is cold-resistant and shade-tolerant.

"White" is an early ripening variety with small fruits; it has a great taste. The plant is cold-resistant, resistant to rot and powdery mildew.

"Masha F1" is an early ripe hybrid that can be grown both in greenhouses and on open ground in the southern territories. The fruits of this hybrid are tied in any weather, in addition, the plant is resistant to disease.

"Roller" is a variety that ripens before other varieties of zucchini. The period from germination to harvesting the first crop is 36-38 days. The variety is resistant to cold.

Zebra is an early ripening variety with very good taste. Its disadvantage is susceptibility to various diseases, including rot and powdery mildew.

"Anchor" - an early ripe variety, has light yellow fruits with the same flesh. Zucchini is stored for a long time.

"Pharaoh" is an excellent variety for the preparation of salads. The pulp is sweet, crispy, yellow.

"Aeronaut" - an early ripe variety, has cylindrical fruits with a whitish-yellow juicy pulp. Commonly used in home cooking. It is well transported.

Cavili is an ultra-early hybrid. The fruits are the same size, light green in color, the flesh is tender. Fruits well even in adverse weather conditions. This hybrid can be grown both in greenhouses and in open ground.

"Lenuca" is an early hybrid with cylindrical fruits. Designed for universal use. Resistant to major diseases of squash: powdery mildew and bacteriosis.

"Sangrum" - an early ripe hybrid with increased sugar content of fruits. The yield is high, the fruiting period is long, it is able to tolerate adverse weather conditions.

The number of plants per hectare of area depends on the growing area. In the south, 10–15 thousand plants are located on a hectare of land, and up to 35 thousand plants in the Non-Chernozem Region. The cost of zucchini seeds depends on the variety and ranges from 600 to 2000 rubles per kilogram. The seeding rate per hectare is 3-5 kilograms.

Zucchini in open ground is grown in two ways: seedlings and seedlings. Seedling method is more expensive and time-consuming, but at the same time more profitable. With the seedling method, the crop can be obtained 15-20 days earlier. Seedlings are used for 25-30 days, planted in well-moistened soil, after two to three days they are irrigated and plants are planted in the place of the dead. When working with seedlings, you can use transplanters. The average cost of such equipment is 200 thousand rubles.

With the seedlingless method of cultivation, seeds are used. Sowing can be done at a soil temperature of 10-12 degrees, this is the minimum temperature for seed germination. The optimum temperature for seed germination is 22-27 degrees. Zucchini can withstand short-term temperature drops of up to 5 degrees, but when the plant freezes, it dies.

In the southern regions, you can get two crops of zucchini on the open ground. Summer sowing is carried out in areas freed from early ripening crops, such as potatoes, white and cauliflower, barley, wheat, oats, rye, peas, and corn. To speed up sowing, a precision seeder is used. Estimated cost of the seeder is 500 thousand rubles.

A high yield allows the use of a drip irrigation system when growing zucchini. The plant standing density with this method is from 10 to 16 thousand plants per hectare. Installation of a drip irrigation system and laying of irrigation pipelines is carried out in advance, before planting. The cost of installing a drip irrigation system depends on the manufacturer, an average of 13-15 thousand rubles per hectare. Before planting, watering is carried out in order to create a soil moisture strip.

In the phase of the first real leaf, thinning is carried out if necessary, the plants are left after 6-8 centimeters. After this, loosening the soil.

Zucchini are susceptible to various pests. This is mainly gourd aphids, thrips and spider mites. To get rid of pests, use insecticides. The most common zucchini diseases are powdery mildew, leronoslorosis, anthracnose and bacteriosis. The best disease prevention is the observance of crop rotation, spatial isolation, the prevention of thickening of crops, the observance of optimal water and nutrient regimes, and regular loosening of the soil. In case of disease damage, fungicides are used.

The timing of irrigation depends on weather conditions and moisture reserves in the soil. Irrigation rate - 300 cubic meters per hectare.

Zucchini is a culture that is responsive to fertilizer application. Supplementary nutrition doubles the yield, improves the taste of the fruit and shortens the ripening time of the crop by 8-10 days. Fertilizers are applied with irrigation water in the form of top dressing. Before flowering, the first top dressing is performed: 25 kilograms of ammonium sulfate, 40-50 kilograms of superphosphate, 20-30 kilograms of potassium nitrate are applied per hectare. The second top dressing is carried out during flowering, the third - during fruiting.

The first fruits of zucchini are harvested 8-10 days after the beginning of flowering, and then every 2-3 days. Harvesting platforms are usually used during fruit picking. The collection is carried out manually, with the involvement of additional labor. For one working day, cleaners are paid from 400 rubles. Fruits harvested with the stalk must be sent immediately to the markets. It is impossible to leave overripe fruits on plants, otherwise the productivity of crops will decrease.

On average, the cost of cultivating zucchini on one hectare using the drip irrigation system is about 500-600 thousand rubles.

The most profitable way to market zucchini - distribution networks, wholesale markets. An early harvest is much more expensive (15-20 rubles per kilogram), so the use of seedling cultivation method and drip irrigation systems are the most profitable. The cost of the June crop is 8-10 rubles per kilogram. With a yield of 80 tons per hectare, the profitability of growing zucchini can be up to 200 percent.

Merkulova Natalya

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