You've got roots growing off the vines in your garden. You wonder.... is
this a good thing? ....It sure is!
The definition of secondary roots is any plant root growth not at the stump
or tap root, the place where the main vine of the plant comes out of the
Secondary roots are a good, make that a GREAT thing. They anchor vines, helping
to protect them from high winds. They nourish the plant and fruit. In some
cases, they even take over feeding and nourishing your plant, if the vine
is separated from the main roots.
Secondary root growth is common on vining plants. This includes: pumpkins,
watermelon, squash and cucumbers. Other plants, like tomatoes, can develop
secondary roots. They form along the vines where the leaf stem meets the
vine. They are white, whitish, or light beige in color. Most form from the
bottom of the vine. Some will form from the top, and curl over the vine and
down into the soil.
Promoting Secondary Root Growth:
Gardeners should promote secondary root growth. It can result in doubling
the size of your fruit!
Promoting secondary root growth is easy. This is done by covering the vine
with a little soil, You can cover the entire vine, or just the area where
the leaf stems meet the vine. Cover vines with about an inch of rich garden
Keep the area well watered, and new, secondary roots will soon be feeding
your plants, putting on pounds to your fruit.
Apply fertilizers to the secondary roots, just as you would to the main tap
root of the plant.