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Watermelon vine decline (WVD) caused by squash vein yellowing virus (SqVYV) is a new and emerging disease that has caused devastating losses for watermelon producers in southwest and west–central Florida ( Huber, 2006 ; Roberts et al., 2005

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Various tillage systems were evaluated in summer squash (Cucurbita pepo) production in southern Illinois to observe the influence of these systems on yellow and zucchini squash production during 1998, 1999, and 2000. For squash production, suppression of a cover crop such as tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea) or winter ryegrass (Secale cereale) must be accomplished to obtain the greatest possible yields. However, once the cover crop is killed via herbicides, squash yields tend to be similar among tillage, strip tillage, and no-tillage treatments. Previous studies indicated that early yields may be reduced when using a no-tillage production system, especially if direct seeding is the method of planting and would not be beneficial to growers seeking early production. This study found that squash growers can use transplants in a no-tillage system and not compromise early yields. No differences were observed for soil bulk densities between tillage and no-tillage treatments and may partially explain why similar yields were obtained between these treatments. Effective systems for weed control must be developed in no-tillage squash production before wide acceptance will occur. Observations from this study indicated that the success of no-tillage squash production depends on the availability of effective herbicides; however, few herbicides are currently labeled for use in summer squash. Future studies need to address the problem of weed control in no-tillage squash production.

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Postharvest applications of polyamines reduced chilling injury of McIntosh apples and zucchini squash. McIntosh apples developed brown core, a symptom of chilling injury, after 5 months of storage at 0°C. However, this disorder was absent in fruit infiltrated with putrescine, spermidine, or spermine. Polyamine treatments also reduced softening of fruit tissue. Pressure infiltration of zucchini squash with spermine immediately after harvest reduced the severity of surface pitting during subsequent storage at 2.5°C. The elevation of spermidine and spermine levels and the augmentation of S-denosyl-methionine decarboxylase activity in squash by temperature preconditioning was also correlated with increased resistance of the squash to chilling injury.

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to vary according to production region and management strategy. This trial was conducted to evaluate the performance of four readily obtainable papers compared with traditional black plastic with a short, warm-season crop (yellow squash) in the

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Abstract

Prestorage temperature conditioning of zucchini squash (Cucurbita pepo L. cv. Ambassador) at 10 or 15C was effective in delaying the onset of chilling injury (surface pitting) during storage at 2.5 or 5.0C. Intermittent warming in cycles of 2 days of chilling followed by 1 day at 20C was also effective in minimizing surface pitting. One-half of the preconditioned squash stored at 5C still was marketable 16 days after harvest, as compared to only 8 days for the chilled control. Due to its simplicity, temperature preconditioning may have potential to become a commercially important technique for extending the shelf life of zucchini squash.

Open Access

Abstract

Double-cropping systems were compared to the same vegetable monocropped. Snap beans [Phaseolus vulgaris (L.) ‘Bush Blue Lake’], sweet corn [Zea mays (L.) ‘Sundance’], cauliflower [Brassica oleracea (L.), Botrytis group, ‘Snow Crown’], summer squash [Cucurbita pepo (L.) ‘Zucchini Elite’], and broccoli [Brassica oleracea (L.), Italica group, ‘Green Comet’] were used. The double-crop systems used were spring snap bean and fall cauliflower, summer squash and fall broccoli, and spring sweet corn and fall snap beans. The monocrop system was used as a control for the double-crop systems. The greatest net returns were: 1) squash monocropped or squash/broccoli double-cropped, 2) squash double-cropped, 3) cauliflower or cauliflower/snap bean double-cropped, and 4) broccoli or cauliflower or snap beans monocropped. Fall snap beans provided the least economic return. The double-cropping system allows an option of crop production with a potential increase in yield and economic returns using half the amount of land per year required for either crop grown in monoculture. In addition, these systems reduce the risk of economic failure during a year of low-market demand for either crop grown alone.

Open Access

commonly used in Asia and Europe, bottle gourd ( Lagenaria sicereria cv. Emphasis) (Syngenta Seeds, Boise, ID) and interspecific hybrid squash ( Cucurbita maxima × Cucurbita moschata cv. Carnivor) (Syngenta Seeds), were sown in 72-cell, TLC polyform

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Acorn squash (Cucurbita pepo L.) is one of the three major classes of squash consumed in North America. Breeding improvements over the past 30 years have focused on more compact cultivars, earlier maturity, darker rind color, and powdery mildew tolerance (PMT). Our observations from sampling acorn squash from local supermarkets at different times during the year show that eating quality is highly variable, and most often, not acceptable. Our taste tests indicate that for acceptable eating, quality acorn squash should have °Brix of 10 or higher, flesh %DW above 16, and a smooth, nonfibrous texture. Most commercial cultivars fail to meet the above minimum criteria for quality. Proper harvest time is a major determinant of squash eating quality. To obtain adequate °Brix levels, squash should not be harvested until at least 50 days after pollination (DAP). If squash are harvested between 25 to 40 DAP and then stored for two or more weeks, °Brix levels may increase to acceptable levels, but some mesocarp reserves will be remobilized to developing seeds, reducing mesocarp %DW and lowering eating quality. A major goal of the squash breeding efforts at the University of New Hampshire has been to increase mesocarp %DW for obtaining more consistent eating quality. We have evaluated several experimental PMT hybrids during the past 5 years, and in some of these, flesh DW has averaged 17% or higher, and eating quality has been rated consistently very good. The adoption of better quality acorn cultivars together with implementing proper harvest times and storage conditions could appreciably increase per capita consumption.

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Yellow nutsedge (YNS) can be a serious problem where vegetables are grown on polyethylene mulch. YNS will rapidly cover the row and become a nuisance. This study was conducted to determine the effect of various population densities of YNS on the yield response of yellow squash grown on black polyethylene. Presprouted YNS tubers were planted at densities of 0, 10, 20, 40, and 50/m2 the day after `Superpik' yellow squash was planted. In 1996 the YNS did not produce tubers. Top growth increased up to 40/m2, but root growth increased to 50/m2. In 1997 top and root growth increased up to 20/m2. Tuber production increased up to 40/m2. In 1998 top, root, and tubers dry weight increased as the YNS density increased to 50 tubers/m2. There were no differences in weight of the squash plants or fruit yields any year. In experiments over three growing seasons, YNS at the densities tested did not interfere with the yield of yellow summer squash grown on black polyethylene mulch. The rapid growth of the squash and its dense canopy provide too much shade for the YNS to grow competitively. The yield of the YNS was greater in wet years than in dry years. The increased supply of YNS tubers could cause squash yield reductions in future plantings because of potential densities greater than those use in this study. YNS competition could also be a problem in rotational crops that are less competitive.

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Abstract

Squash (Cucurbita pepo), cucumber (Cucumis sativus), muskmelon (Cucumis melo) and corn (Zea mays.) plants were grown in sand culture with B as the variable. The plants were harvested when they showed a definite gradation of B toxicity symptoms from severe to none. Mature blades were analyzed for total B.

A significant decrease in top growth took place in corn and cucumber for culture solutions with B concentrations greater than 2 ppm; in squash and muskmelon, greater than 4 ppm. A 50% decrease in top growth took place in solutions with 6, 12, 12 and 16 ppm of B for cucumber, squash, muskmelon and corn, respectively, with cucumber the most sensitive and corn the least sensitive to B supply. The critical concentrations for B toxicity in mature blades at the onset of decreased top growth are 100, 400, 800 and 1,000 ppm, dry basis, for corn, cucumber, muskmelon and squash, respectively.

Open Access