Rotting Zucchinis - Knowledgebase Question

Magnolia, DE
Question by ljhc
June 16, 2000
We moved into a new home this year and I established a garden with topsoil, peat moss, and dehydrated cow manure. I've planted a variety of vegetables (tomatoes, peppers, cukes, beans, etc...). However, my zuchinnis have all grown to be about 2" long and then turn yellow and rot off the plant. I don't know if this is a water problem or soil problem, but my Mother in law-- who lives 5 miles away, is also having the same problem this year and last. In our previous home, I had no problems. I want to be able to salvage some of the zuchinni-- help!


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Answer from NGA
June 16, 2000

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It sounds like a pollination problem. The wet spring weather, combined with reduced populations of honeybees due to parasites, may have led to little or no pollinator activity in your garden. Encourage pollinators by planting a variety of flowers in and around your garden. In the meantime, try hand pollinating the squash blossoms by using a small artists' paintbrush to transfer pollen from a male flower to a female one. Hopefully, the weather will be more agreeable for pollinators in the future.

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