Winter Squash Problems - Knowledgebase Question

Lexington, MA
Question by lmenzin
July 19, 1998
Some of my winter squash vines have one or two pollinated fruit on them but all the other fruit turn yellow and fall off the vine when they are no larger than small marbles. Is there anything I can do to rectify this?


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Answer from NGA
July 19, 1998

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Sounds as though there is lack of pollination, which is pecular this late in the season. Normally there should be lots of insect activity around the squash blossoms. You can remove a male flower and visit the female flowers to help the pollination process along. Male blossoms differ from female blossoms in that they have a straight stem from the base of the flower to the vine. (Female flowers have a small swelling at the base of the blossom.) Just dust the inside of the flowers together to help transfer pollen fromt he male blossom to the female. To attract insects to your yard, try to have a variety of flowers blooming in the spring and summer months, and use insecticides carefully so you don't wipe out the population in your garden.

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