Atena F1 Courgette Defender F1

Planting courgettes: Atena F1 and Defender F1

Not so long ago I planted courgette Atena and Defender into pots, one variety produces a yellow courgette and the other variety produces a standard green courgette.

A couple of the seedlings were victim to slug attack, so I didn’t end up with as many as I’d hoped.

They’ve germinated beautifully and now they’re ready to plant out.  The plants are around 4-5 inches tall and have developed a long second set of leaves.  Courgettes are fantastic plants and are great in the summer as the basis to a vegetable lasagna or if any kind of tomato ragu.

If you’re growing courgettes or anything of the cucurbit family (squash, marrows, pumpkins…etc) it’s best to grow an even number of them, this is because the plants will produce either male or female flowers based on the conditions they’re in.

Lower temperatures and a lack of sunshine will produce male flowers, where as higher temperatures and poor ventilation will produce female flowers – as with everything to do with relationships, if you’re looking for an even outcome, everything in moderation!

Growing courgettes, squashes and marrows is great fun and very easy. I’ve seen people grow cucurbit plants in all kinds of locations, from hanging baskets to the top of compost bins.  Like most plants they enjoy plenty of water, nutrient soil and fairly warm conditions. The other great thing about courgettes, is that the more you pick the produce the more you will get back in return.

Courgette pests

Slugs and snails are a real issue if you’re growing courgettes. Slugs don’t leave much in their path as it is and the site of fresh courgette plants be like what honey is to bears – irresistible.

Courgettes also attract black fly and white fly so growing marigolds in among your plants will act as a good deterrent to any opportunists who may want to eat up your plants.

I’ve planted my courgettes in with my runner beans so that hopefully they’ll act as ground cover and keep the majority of weeds at bay.

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