The Q&A Archives: Cucumber Plants Yellowing

Question: I planted zucchini and cuke seeds the last week in August. They came up fine (nice and green) but have recently turned yellowish and look like they're wilitng. The PH in the soil is 6. When I rototilled the garden, which hadn't been used for some time, I added peat moss to the soil. Would this affect it?

Answer: Both zucchini and cucumber are warm-season crops, are usually planted in the spring after the soil warms up. They grow best in a sunny spot where they have room to sprawl, in soil that drains well. Most veggies tolerate a soil pH of 6.0 to 7.5, so pH isn't a problem with your plants. Peatmoss will help acidify the soil, and as long as it's mixed well into the soil, it's a great source of organic matter. I suspect the nighttime temperatures are too cool for the plants to thrive, and that's why the leaves are yellowing. Overwatering will cause similar symptoms in the early summer. Instead of growing warm-season crops at this time of year, why not replace your ailing squash and cukes with lettuce or spinach, or try growing cabbage or carrots?

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