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Cucurbita pepo
( Custard Marrow Squash )

'Custard Marrow', also known as 'Pattypan' or 'Cymling' is an heirloom variety dating back to the 16th century in Europe. These bushy, large-leaved plants grow to 30 inches high and in 55 days produce 7-9 inch white or yellow fruits. Best harvested green and prepared like zucchini.
Important Info : Summer squash should be sown indoors in flats in short season areas, 3-4 weeks before the night soil temperatures have warmed up.


How to Grow this Plant:


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Characteristics
Cultivar:Custard Marrow  
Family:Curbitaceae  
Size:Height: 0 ft. to 2.5 ft.
Width: 0 ft. to 2.5 ft.  
Plant Category:annuals and biennials,  
Plant Characteristics: 
Foliage Characteristics: 
Foliage Color: 
Flower Characteristics:showy,  
Flower Color: 
Tolerances: 
Requirements
Bloomtime Range:not applicable  
USDA Hardiness Zone:undefined  
AHS Heat Zone:Not defined for this plant  
Light Range:Part Sun to Full Sun  
pH Range:5.5 to 7.5  
Soil Range:Some Sand to Clay Loam  
Water Range:Normal to Moist  

Plant Care



Fertilizing
Light
Conditions : Full Sun

Full Sun is defined as exposure to more than 6 hours of continuous, direct sun per day.

Watering
Conditions : Normal Watering for Outdoor Plants

Normal watering means that soil should be kept evenly moist and watered regularly, as conditions require. Most plants like 1 inch of water a week during the growing season, but take care not to over water. The first two years after a plant is installed, regular watering is important for establishment. The first year is critical. It is better to water once a week and water deeply, than to water frequently for a few minutes.

Planting
How-to : Preparing Garden Beds

Use a soil testing kit to determine the acidity or alkalinity of the soil before beginning any garden bed preparation. This will help you determine which plants are best suited for your site. Check soil drainage and correct drainage where standing water remains. Clear weeds and debris from planting areas and continue to remove weeds as soon as they come up.

A week to 10 days before planting, add 2 to 4 inches of aged manure or compost and work into the planting site to improve fertility and increase water retention and drainage. If soil composition is weak, a layer of topsoil should be considered as well. No matter if your soil is sand or clay, it can be improved by adding the same thing: organic matter. The more, the better; work deep into the soil. Prepare beds to an 18 inch deep for perennials. This will seem like a tremendous amount of work now, but will greatly pay off later. Besides, this is not something that is easily done later, once plants have been established.

Problems
Pest : Cucumber Beetle

Cucumber Beetles have a greenish-yellow cast to their hard wing covers, which have a dozen black spots. The western spotted cucumber beetle is orangish with 3 rows of black spots. The most destructive of the cucumber beetles is the western striped cucumber beetle - it has greenish yellow stripes. The larvae of these beetles have legs, are white and slender and about 1/4 - 1/2 of an inch long and have brown heads with brown patches on the first and last segments.

Adult beetles chew holes in leaves and flowers and are notorious disease spreaders of such things as mosaic virus and bacterial wilt. This is transmitted through their mouth parts.

Prevention and Control: If you can find resistant varieties, plant them. Floating row covers help to keep out adults, but should be removed at the onset of flowers. Birds, tachinid flies, and handpicking are the safest control. Insecticides can be used; make sure the product you are using is labelled for cucumber beetle control. Follow all label procedures to a tee.

Miscellaneous
Glossary : Viruses

Viruses, which are smaller than bacteria, are not living and do not replicate on their own. They must rely on the cellular mechanisms of their hosts to replicate. Because this greatly disrupts the cell's functionality, outward signs of a viral infection result in a plant disease with symptoms such as abnormal or stunted growth, damaged fruit, discolorations or spots.

Prevention and Control: Keep virus carriers such as aphids, leafhoppers, and thrips under control. These plant feeding insects spread viruses. Viruses can also be introduced by infected pollen or through plant openings (as when pruning). Begin by keeping the pathogen out of your garden. New plants should be checked, as well as tools and existing plants. Use only certified seed that is deemed disease-free. Plant only resistant varieties and create a discouraging environment by rotating crops, not planting closely related plants in the same area every year.

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