Home > Grow Vegetables > Grow Your Own Courgettes, Cucumbers, Marrows

Grow Your Own Courgettes, Cucumbers, Marrows

By: Kate Bradbury - Updated: 13 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Grow Your Own Courgettes, Cucumbers, Marrows

Cucurbits (cucumbers, marrows, courgettes and squash) are fun plants to grow and yield impressive results. Courgettes are an ideal vegetable to grow for a beginner, and you are likely to always have more than you need.

The plants take up a lot of room and require a very fertile soil, so dedicate a large growing space and add plenty of rich, organic matter such as homemade compost or well-rotted manure to see them through the growing season. Many gardeners actually grow their cucurbits directly in manure to get the best results. Always make sure your manure is well-rotted, as fresh manure can burn the plants.

Growing Cucumbers

Cucumbers are best grown indoors, in a greenhouse. There are varieties that may be grown outdoors but you will have better results if you grow them under glass.

Sow seeds in February in a heated greenhouse or April in an unheated greenhouse. Sow seeds on their side 13mm in 5cm pots, two seeds per pot. If both seeds germinate, remove the weaker one. Transplant young plants to 25cm pots in late March in a heated greenhouse or late May in an unheated greenhouse.

Keep greenhouse humidity levels high by watering the floor or leaving a full bucket of water in the greenhouse (you can then use the warm water to water the plants, which will be less shocking to them than using cold water).

Support the plants with a vertical wire or cane. Pinch out sideshoots beyond a female flower and remove the tips of flowerless sideshoots. Keep the soil moist by watering regularly, though avoid over-watering. Encourage pollinators, such as bees into your greenhouse by opening the doors and windows on hot days. Harvest the fruits when they are about 15-20cm long, using secateurs or a sharp knife.

Growing Courgettes and Marrows

Marrows and courgettes require similar growing conditions; in fact courgettes are just baby marrows. Sow two seeds on their side per station, 2.5cm deep outdoors in late May or early June, or in pots in a greenhouse from March. If both seeds germinate, remove the weaker one.

Keep the pots moist, then when the plants’ roots begin to show through the bottom of the pot, transplant courgettes into a large container or grow bag. If you are growing them outdoors, transplant them into a well-prepared bed, after all risk of frost has passed. Marrows are best transplanted outside as the plants and fruit can grow very big.

When planting courgettes and marrows outside, it’s a good idea to make planting pockets, roughly 30cm square and deep and filled with compost or well-rotted manure and soil. Space them 60cm apart for bush varieties or 1.2m apart for trailers. Make a low mound at the top of the pockets, then dig a planting hole and place the young plants into them.

Keep the soil moist by watering regularly. It’s a good idea to sink a 15cm pot in the soil next to the plants. By watering into the pot you will ensure the water goes directly to the roots of the plant. This can also be done in grow bags and large containers. Protect the fruits from soil damage by lifting them off the ground, using bricks or even polythene.

Harvest courgettes when they are no larger than 12cm and marrows when they are 25cm. Don’t allow them to grow too big, as their flavour diminishes with size. The flowers are also edible.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Rukhs
    Re: Selling from Your Allotment
    Any idea where I can sell my allotment produce.
    28 September 2019
  • Grubbygreenfingers
    Re: Our First Year in the Allotment: A Case Study
    Horticultural Black Plastic sheets can be a great answer for weeds it is also sold as silage sheeting.…
    21 September 2019
  • Charly
    Re: Make Your Own Biodegradable Plant Pots
    I like this piece, however it doesn't make sense to use sellotape when making the pots as that isn't bio degradable.
    21 July 2019
  • Billy
    Re: Building Your Own Cob House
    I am looking to buy a plot of land approx 50 - 100 acres. My desire is to live off the land sustainably. My partner and I would…
    22 June 2019
  • Rob the roller
    Re: What Not to Do in Your Allotment
    Hi Giancarlo I am sorry to hear about your unfortunate condition. There is nothing to prevent you growing mushrooms etc…
    27 November 2018
  • Kate br
    Re: Selling from Your Allotment
    I would recommend. Country markets as local places to sell surplus veg
    9 November 2018
  • JoJo
    Re: Foraging for Mushrooms
    @Amy - Lepiota (Dapperlings) which look like smaller versions of Parasols have an approx 7cm diametre. They can be very poisonous - so…
    3 September 2018
  • Amy
    Re: Foraging for Mushrooms
    Hello, Im wanting some advice please,ive found a fungi/mushroom in my garden...ive been searching on the internet and it seems as its a…
    1 September 2018
  • Mick
    Re: Self-Sufficient Energy
    I am looking into a thermoelectric generator to place on my solid fuel burning stove. The stove is hot all but two weeks out of the year.
    26 June 2018
  • GoSelfSufficient
    Re: What Not to Do in Your Allotment
    Giancarlo - Your Question:Hello,My name is Giancarlo Cristea, I live in Tooting, London, where I came 3 years ago.…
    24 May 2018