How I repaired the zucchini stem
Earle Dickson probably never imagined that his invention would one day be used as a zucchini stem repair mechanism. But a Band-Aid is exactly what I employed to perform first aid on my ailing plant.
The leaves that were spotty-yellow two weeks ago have since dried up and fallen off. The rest of the leaves seem to be staying green, and a few of the blossoms have opened up now. Hurrah!
It appears that my strategy is working; if not to heal the stem, the Band-Aid is at least keeping it from splitting any further. I also mounded up the soil around the stem to give it more support.
One reader left me a comment asking if the plant might be afflicted with mosaic virus. Having never heard of mosaic virus, I did a bit of research and found Cornell University's Vegetable MD Online. This site has a tool for diagnosing diseases of cucurbit plants. It's particularly helpful in that it shows actual photos of problems that affect different parts of the plant. The downside, though, is that when I look at these kinds of photos too much, I start to think my poor zucchini plant has any number of diseases!
Since it seems to be doing better now with the patched-up stem, I don't think it was a virus issue. I think the top-heaviness of the leaves caused the stem to burst, and now, with a little extra support, the plant is able to hang on.
No sign of any zukes yet, though.
An Ailing Zucchini Plant - Already?
C for Courgette, Z for Zucchini
It's not a zucchini (2006)