Zucchini and Space Problems
I have noticed some of my zucchini have white marks on them that look like scars. Is this sunburning or maybe a disease?
Also, what problems come with garden plants being too close together? I had some really impressive looking plants planted close together this year, but the quantities of produce were small. Black spots ruined my tomatoes, my zucchini produced for only a few weeks, my eggplants had almost no fruit and had holes in their leaves, and my winter squash vines grew into each other, overwhelming their garden space. Any suggestions for next year?
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
The marks on your zucchini are most likely small scratches the fruit got when small that just developed into larger scars as the fruit grew. It will not hurt the fruit, just a cosmetic blemish.
More sun does help with vegetable production and when plants grow too close, it can affect how much sun you get. But it sounds like you may have a few issues that go beyond overcrowding.
The black spots on the tomatoes sound like blossom end rot. This article will help with that: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/vegetables/tomato/tomato-blossom-rot.htm
The zucchini, if they died after a few weeks, may have had vine borers. This article can help you with that: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/vegetables/zucchini/vine-borers-zucchini.htm
Holes in the leaves of the eggplant would have been flea beetles. This article can help with that: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/plant-problems/pests/insects/what-are-flea-beetles.htm
For your squash, you may want to consider growing them vertically, as this will help them take up less space. Here is an article on that: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/vegetables/vgen/growing-a-vertical-vegetable-garden.htm
There is a lot of information here. We would recommend that you start with correcting the overcrowding. Vegetables are much less susceptible to pests and problems when they have more space. Don't give up though. Gardening is a trial and error process and the end point is to have fun.