Courgette Alberello di Sarzana originates from Italy. This plant grows in the shape of a young tree. It produces a prolific amount of cylindrical, approx. 20 cm long, light green fruits with some light specks. The remains of the flowers are firmly attached to the fruits. This early variety can be grown in a greenhouse or outdoors.
Courgette is very healthy and versatile. You can cook, grill, roast, stew, fill them with minced meat or rice and very young and tender courgettes (till approx. 10 cm) can also be eaten raw. Add some courgette to soups or Italian dishes. Staminate flowers can be filled with cheese and covered with Tempura batter and deep-fried as an appetizer or snack. You can also make a healthy soup from large courgettes. Non hardy annual.
|Scientific name||Curcurbita pepo|
|Sowing guide||Download PDF|
|Days till harvest||90-120|
|Synonyms||edible flower, edible flowers|
Indoor sowing: late March - April
Outdoor sowing: late May - June (avoid frosts)
Germination: 7 - 14 days
Germinationtemp.: 20 - 22 °C
Sowing depth: 1 - 1½ cm
Plant distance: 1 meter
Plant position: sunny/sheltered
Days till harvest: 90 - 120
These plants need a continious soil temperature to ensure the best germination. The temperature must be at least 20 °C. Sow late march 1 seed sideways 1-1½ cm deep in individual pots with good sowing soil and cover with a layer of soil. Put these pots away in a propagator or heated greenhouse at at least 20 °C. Keep moist, but not waterlogged, to prevent the seeds from rotting. Lower the temperature a bit when the seeds have germinated. Harden the seedlings for 10 - 14 days of to outdoor conditions (avoid frosts), before transplanting them outdoors on a sunny plot with shelter against the wind.
Sow outdoors from late may (avoid frosts) in a well fertilized seedbed on a sunny and sheltered spot. Sow 3 seeds per hole 1-1½ cm deep and at least 1 meter apart. Cover the seeds with sowing soil. Thin to the strongest when the seedlings are large enough to handle.
Courgettes are greedy plants. Give every 14 days some liquid tomato type fertilizer when the fruits are starting to grow. They also need support and protection against slugs, snails, birds and other pests. Water around the plants and not over them to prevent the fruits from rotting.
Pick the courgettes while young and tender and pick regularly to ensure the growth of more fruits all season long. Harvest by cutting them with a knife and leave a bit of the stem on the fruit to prevent it from rotting. Some people can be allergic to the tiny bristles on courgette leaves, wearing gloves can help to prevent allergic reactions.