Vegetables and Fruit forum: Cucumbers variety=Mila, no male flowers

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Name: Frank
Morris Co., NJ
BaronLand
Jul 21, 2013 12:08 AM CST
I planted some Mila cucumbers, and the vines are growing profusely, with lots of female flowers being visited by large numbers of bees and butterflies. There are no male flowers at all, hence no pollination. I've read that they are "parthenogenic", so they are supposed to set fruit without pollination. The trouble is, when the flowers fall off, so do the little cucumbers - exactly like you'd expect in a different variety where there weren't enough bees. It's been hot the past couple weeks, but the vines seem to be happy enough. Any idea what's needed to get them to set fruit?
Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Jul 21, 2013 6:08 AM CST
Sometimes if it's too hot the immature fruit will fall off, in my experience.
Name: Dillard Haley
Augusta Georgia (Zone 8a)
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farmerdill
Jul 21, 2013 7:28 AM CST
It is probably stress. It is a greenhouse pickling cucumber. It does not need bees. and will be seedless unless some stray pollen is brought in. It was developed for growing under controlled conditions and may more subject to weather stress than a variety developed for open field growing. It seem many folks have problems with parthenocarpic cucumbers when grown outside a green house.
From Seminis which states "A very early pickling cucumber hybrid with outstanding total yield. This is a parthenocarpic variety that is not dependent on insect pollination. With adequate nutrition, forms 6-7 fruits at each node. Non-bitter fruits show very early and even maturing. The fruit length/thickness (diameter) ratio (L/D) is 3.25. Suitable for fresh market and processing. Resistant to Cladosporium and Powdery mildew, tolerant to Cucumber mosaic virus. Recommended for upstrings and bush culture in plastic film greenhouses and in the open field."


Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Jul 21, 2013 9:42 AM CST
Welcome! Welcome to ATP!

If you want to grow a reliable parthenogenic cucumber variety try Camilla. I am currently growing them outside in the garden with excellent results. Lots and lots of fruit set.
Name: Frank
Morris Co., NJ
BaronLand
Jul 21, 2013 9:52 AM CST
Thanks for the info. The temps around here (NW New Jersey) have been in the mid to upper 90's, but it's forecast to be in the 80's this week - maybe the vines will be happier. In any event, I think it's time for "plan B". I should have 10~12 weeks left before hard frost, so I think I'll try another variety & see how that does. Any recommendations for a "late season planting"?
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Jul 21, 2013 9:58 AM CST
I started my second crop only last week myself, the seedlings have just come up. I think there are probably still seeds for the more common varieties at any local nurseries. I would just buy whatever they had. Any of the Marketmore types are a proven standby and also the old Straight Eights that I grow.
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Jul 21, 2013 3:17 PM CST
Straight Eight, not fussy.
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But I like Camilla better!
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Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
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chelle
Jul 21, 2013 3:36 PM CST
Suhyo Cross is a good one, too. It sets bitter-free fruit easily in steady 90+ degree weather.


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Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Jul 21, 2013 3:39 PM CST
chelle, are those the same as Suyo Long? There are a batch of the asian longish spiny cukes but any I have tasted all taste very good.
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
I'm always on my way out the door..
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chelle
Jul 21, 2013 5:59 PM CST
I don't know, Rita, but it seems likely. Shrug!

What I do know is that these are good enough to eat with the skins left on. Thumbs up Rub off the spines as you pick 'em, wash and eat! Yummy!
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Name: Frank
Morris Co., NJ
BaronLand
Jul 28, 2013 11:07 AM CST
Thanks for the advice all. The temps around here have dropped back into the 70s and guess what: cucumbers are appearing all over the place! So I guess the problem was indeed heat stress. Biggest challenge now is getting some more trellises in place, the vines are invading the tomato patch. I just planted a 2nd crop, variety is "Muncher". I selected it very scientifically: it was the only remaining packet of cucumber seeds in the county. Found at a dollar store, everywhere else has replaced seeds with lawn products or back-to-school supplies.
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
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Newyorkrita
Jul 28, 2013 11:13 AM CST
Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Frank, I love your very scientific approach! Honestly, I think those munchers will be good cucumbers. I might try that variety myself next year.

And so nice that your cucumbers are setting. Thumbs up
Name: Frank
Morris Co., NJ
BaronLand
Aug 3, 2013 9:53 AM CST
Hi Rita, yes "better living thru science" Smiling It turns out it wasn't quite the last packet, I found one more in a Chinese grocery store. Unfortunately, the variety is just given as "Chinese Cucumber". (It may be more specific in the Chinese text, but I don't know most of the characters.) The picture shows them as looking rather long, not necessarily straight, and with some lengthwise ridges. Could be like the ones Chelle mentioned. I had some compost left so I dug it in & made a few hills. It's turned cool & rainy around here, but we'll see what happens.

Meanwhile the Milas are maturing all over the place. There are going to be way too many to eat right away. Since the info above says they're a pickling variety, maybe I'll try that. Anyone have a pointer to a pickling "how to"? I've done some canning, but never tried picking.
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
I'm always on my way out the door..
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Forum moderator Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Master Level Dog Lover Cottage Gardener
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chelle
Aug 3, 2013 10:51 AM CST
Congratulations! Hurray!

Here's a really easy one for sweets...never got around to posting one for dills. *Blush*

http://garden.org/blogs/entry/662/
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Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Newyorkrita
Aug 3, 2013 11:39 AM CST
Frank, the skinny long Chinese or Japanese cucumbers are all very good eating. They do look slightly odd with the more pronounced ridges and spines. Trellis them to keep them growing straight or you will end up with oddly shaped cukes.

I think the easiest way to pickle is to make refrigerator pickles. But I have never done it so I can't give any pointers.
Name: Frank
Morris Co., NJ
BaronLand
Sep 8, 2013 12:49 PM CST
Hi all, got back from a biz trip to find the garden overrun with cucumbers & gigantic zucchinis, & what looks like early blight on the tomato plants Sad (It's turned very cool and damp here, bad for fungus. Gonna take a sample to the extension service folks & see what to do about it.)
Anyhow, we packed a dozen quarts of pickles & are cranking up the works again tonight. Ball (as in Mason jars) has some pre-formulated mixes for both bread&butter and garlic dills, so I took the easy way & followed the directions. There are instructions for both refrigerator and "shelf" (hot pack & process) ones. We made some of each & sampled them after a week or so. Not bad! Since fridge space is always at a premium, I guess the remaining batches will be processed. I've also heard that you can make some interesting pickles from squash, so time permitting I'll see if I can use up some of the surplus (!!) summer squash that way. I'm also anxious to try some of the pickle recipes & see how they turn out. BTW, I think my opinion of the Mila variety is in fact quite high. In the long run they turned out to be excellent producers. They have a very mild flavor (in fact some of my Asian friends said they had no flavor at all!), but they easily take on the flavor of the pickling brine, even when left whole (we did poke them with a fork here & there to help absorption). I'll definitely consider growing them again, but this time not so close to other crops, as they're very aggressive climbers once they get going.
Not sure about the 2nd crop; they're growing nicely, but it's getting chilly overnight. All depends on the weather!
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Newyorkrita
Sep 8, 2013 1:24 PM CST
So glad you were successful and sounds as if you were very successful from your bountiful harvest. I am always glad when updates are posted as I am one of those people that want to know how everything turned out.

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