Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Zucchini Blossom End Rot

I have noticed that the zucchini plants in my garden are a bit undersized at this point in the season, but they still seemed to be chugging along (in spite of the slugs constant assaults). Unfortunately, over the past couple of weeks I have seen 3 or 4 zucchini grow about 4 inches, stop growing, and then rot on one end. After a bit of research, I have come to the conclusion that what I am seeing is Blossom End Rot (BER). BER is caused by plants not taking in enough calcium. This can be caused by poor calcium levels in the soil or waterlogged plants that are not taking in the calcium effectively. I might be suffering from both, but I am definitely blaming the recent rains. There does not seem to be an easy short term solution to this problem but fortunately it may be a temporary problem. I am going to add a bit of compost to the base of the plants today to see if that helps. Also this problem reinforces the fact that I need to get my soil tested before next summer.

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