Calabaza yield and size at two spacings when grown on various plastic mulches as a second crop

J. M. White


Experimental hybrid SS13, a semi-bush tropical pumpkin (calabaza), Cucurbita moschata, was grown in 2000 in Apopka, Fla., on polyethylene-mulched raised beds with drip irrigation to evaluate the effects on yield and fruit size of 3- and 4-foot spacings. There were seven black mulches at two thicknesses, two black on white, two white, three silver, two blue, and one each of black, olive, red, green, and brown for a total of 28 types of mulch. Plots were 50 feet long with four replications in a randomized complete block design. Transplanting to the field, after a crop of tomato and pepper, occurred on 6 September. An early freeze occurred on 22 November, terminating vine growth and fruit development. Fruit diameter ranged between 3.6 and 8.3 inches and was not affected by mulch type. The 4-foot spacing was higher than the 3-foot spacing in fruit diameter, number of fruit, and fruit weight per plant. But, the 3-foot spacing had a higher yield per acre than the 4-foot spacing (367 vs 317 cwt.)

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283