Starting Zucchini Seeds Indoors – Planting Tips

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Few things are as exciting as the moment you realize you can start your seeds for the current gardening season. Starting zucchini seeds indoors is something you should consider if you have enough space for a plant or two.

Zucchini plants are known for their prolific nature. You’ve likely seen the gardening memes about sneakily sharing zucchinis because there are just too darn many!

(Unfortunately, this has yet to be my problem, as we’ve constantly had issues with squash vine borers.)

Still, we persist to try another day! I’m sure there are some tricks of the trade we’ll pick up and hopefully have that harvest of a lifetime!

Packets of Zucchini Seeds - Growing Zucchini from Seed Indoors
Packets of Zucchini Seeds we’ve tried growing

Are you ready to try growing zucchini seeds indoors this year?

Let’s get started with a bit of helpful info!

How do zucchinis grow?

Zucchini grows as a bush or a vine. Sprawling zucchini plants can take up a lot of space in the garden, so some gardeners like to train them up a tomato cage or trellis. Vining zucchini plants are best suited for vertical growing in this manner.

After your zucchini plants mature, you will see flowers that eventually have a tiny zucchini plant on them. Those are the female flowers with the embryo, which becomes a real zucchini once that flower is pollinated.

What do zucchini seeds look like?

Zucchini seeds are pointy ovals and cream or light tan in color. The seeds of zucchinis are flat and very similar in appearance to other squash seeds and even gourd and pumpkin seeds.

What do zucchini seedlings look like?

Zucchini seedlings have bright and beautiful green coloring. The cotyledon (first leaf set to emerge) features plump, rounded, oval leaves, in this case, with a waxy texture. Visible veins may be present on both the cotyledon and the true leaves as they grow. The true leaves boast a lovely shape that is a bit more raggedy. These are palmately lobed, meaning the leaves resemble a hand with individual “fingers” coming out from the center of the leaf.

Zucchini seedlings growing in some soil with first true leaf peeking through
Zucchini seedlings growing in some soil with first true leaf peeking through

Choosing What Kind of Zucchini to Plant

Growing zucchini from seed is way easier than you might expect. In fact, the toughest part for me is always the battle with pests.

One day, I hope to discover if there are any borer-resistant varieties.

You can try lots of different varieties of zucchini.

  • Black Beauty Zucchini Seeds
  • Golden Zucchini Seeds (or Gold Rush Hybrid)
  • Haifa’s Finest Zucchini (by Fruition Seeds)
  • Magda Zucchini (pale lime green in color)
  • Round Zucchini Seeds

I’m sure there are many kinds of zucchini I’m missing. If you know of some, please shout them out in the comments! I’ll happily update the list.

How to Plant Zucchini Seeds Indoors

Starting zucchini from seeds only takes a few moments once you have all your supplies together.

I like to use egg cartons or seed starting trays when first planting the seeds. Quality potting mix and a garden spray bottle are also handy. And, of course you will need zucchini seeds!

Follow these steps on growing zucchini from seeds indoors:

  1. Fill your seed starter trays most of the way with soil.
  2. Gently poke a hole into each seed cell that is about ½-inch to 1-inch deep.
  3. Drop a zucchini seed into each hole.
  4. Label the seed cells with the type of zucchini seeds you’ve planted.
  5. Use the spray bottle to evenly water each zucchini seed.
  6. Set the seed trays under LED grow lights or in a sunny window.
  7. Monitor daily for moisture needs and signs of growth!

Tips on Growing Zucchini from Seed

Starting zucchini from seed is definitely an easy activity for gardeners of all experience levels.

Starting Zucchini from Seed Indoors to reach full-grown outdoor plants!
Starting Zucchini from Seed Indoors to reach full-grown outdoor plants!

Here are some tips I’ve figured out over the years to help you with the best chances of success.

  • Don’t overdo it! One or two zucchini plants should be more than enough for most families, as long as you don’t run into the same issues with the pests.
  • Consider planting Blue Hubbard squash as a trap crop. This will be my first year trying it, but Blue Hubbard is said to be a trap crop for the dreaded squash bugs and squash vine borers. (Source: Integrated Pest Management: University of Missouri) Plant to plant it a few weeks before you plant zucchini seeds so the Blue Hubbard will be larger, more enticing, and available earlier.
  • Delay planting out your zucchini if trying trap cropping. If you plant a Blue Hubbard in your yard, wait a few weeks before transplanting your zucchini plants.
  • Try succession planting! You can also plant zucchini plants after the 1st of July for a fall crop. You may also have better luck in evading pests with this timing.

Do you have any other favorite tips for growing zucchini from seeds? Be sure to share them in our comments so we can all benefit.

Also feel free to ask questions if you have any! We love helping and hearing from you!

Happy Gardening!

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  1. To eliminate losing your summer squash plants to vine borers, wrap aluminum foil around the seedlings stems from below the soil line to the first set of true leaves. This works with all cucurbits.

    1. Hi Ellie, thanks so much for sharing this helpful tip! I’d heard this works from another gardener and love hearing that it works for you, too. It definitely gives lots of hope!

    2. This works! I do this and a Q tip soaked with mint essential oil. Since doing these two things, no squash vine borers and very minimal squash bugs!

      1. Hi Julie! Great to hear from you and thanks so much for this awesome tip – I am totally trying it! I have peppermint essential oil – hopefully that is the right one! Thanks so much for sharing and fingers crossed for good luck with this!

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