My first time gardening and I planted zucchini and squash next to each other approx. 6-8 in. apart. By watching videos online after I planted, I saw how big they get. Should of been 2-3 ft. apart. I did the same thing to cucumbers next to them also. My question is, what will happen if I don't do anything and let them grow as close as they are, or should I take out some of them and space them apart farther? If I let them stay, will they grow smaller or not at all, or what?
Zucchini and Squash
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
They will grow smaller than they should and will produce less because the plants will be competing for water, nutrients and sunlight. They may also be more prone to disease because of the reduced airflow. With the cucumbers, you can try growing them vertically to help alleviate some of the problem: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/vegetables/vgen/growing-a-vertical-vegetable-garden.htm
But with the zucchini, you may need to pull some out. You can try transplanting, but they may die from transplant shock.
My zucchini plants have just about taken over their row and the cucumber row next to them, surprisingly the cucumbers are still doing okay and growing well underneath. So, if I were you I would just leave them alone and plant further apart next year. I would be nervous that the plants would stop growing and blooming if you dig them up and transplant. but what do I know? Experts?