The Q&A Archives: Rotting Of Zucchini

Question: Why are the ends of about 40% of my golden zucchini rotting before maturity? The rot begins when they are 2-4" long.

Answer: Pollination failure is the likely cause of the rotting fruit. When the weather is cold, or too wet, insect activity is low. When flowers are not pollinated, the developing fruit will fail to enlarge and can turn brown, beginning at the blossom end. Usually you just need to wait for warmer weather, or hand pollinate your plants by breaking off a male flower and making contact with female flowers. You can tell which are which by comparing the flowers - female flowers will have an enlarged area directly behind the blossom, male flowers have a narrow, smooth stem directly behind the petals of the blossoms.

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