Zucchini grows quickly and produces abundant fruit in early to mid-summer. This versatile vegetable adds crisp sweetness to fresh garden salads or vegetable stir-fries when picked early. When full grown, zucchini reaches a length of 12 inches or more, but develops a tough skin and large seeds. Mature zucchini is often shredded and added to breads and muffins to add both moisture and flavor. Growing zucchini requires little care other than regular watering, fertilizing and harvesting the fruits when they are young and tender.
Prepare soil in a sunny location that receives at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sun a day. Till to a depth of 8 to 10 inches and amend with a 3- to 4-inch layer of compost or well-rotted manure.
Plant seeds in late spring when the danger of frost has passed in your area and soil temperatures reach 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Sow seed to a depth of 1 inch, spaced 3 feet apart in rows spaced 2 1/2 to 3 feet apart.
Use a sprayer to fertilize with water-soluble foliage feeder designed for vegetable gardens. Wet foliage completely and allow the excess to drain into the soil. Repeat every 3 weeks.
Water deeply once a week to moisten the soil to the root level. During hot dry spells, zucchini may require more frequent watering. Keep soil moist, especially during blooming and fruiting.
Harvest when fruit is 6 to 8 inches long, before the skin begins to get tough. Keep fruit picked to encourage the plant to continue blooming and setting fruit. Once fruit reaches maturity, it tells the plant to cease production.