We’ve struggled to grow plants in the Cucumber family: squash, pumpkins, melons, zucchini, etc. I think mainly because cucurbits are extremely “hungry” for nitrogen–even more than Corn. And since we do not use synthetic nitrogen sources (because I think it is stupid; it makes up 80% of the air we breathe), they have been runty. When they are runty, they are assailed by Cucumber Beetles that absolutely devastate the crop.
Not any more!
This site was where chickens were “pastured” last year and it received a generous Red Clover hay mulching I wrote about earlier. It was also in Sweetclover/Winterbarley before the chickens, which also helped.
Never have we seen cucurbits so vigorous, and these are the winter squash, which are big favorites of everyone. They are crowding out the tomatoes and have completely disregarded my “raised beds.” Next year, I am planting corn and squash in patches, not in beds.