zstokes85
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Newbie squash question

Hi all! My first garden is doing well thus far, here's my first of I'm sure many silly questions to come... I have 6 squash plants (4 zuccini, 2 crookneck). I have several buds about to bloom on all the zuccini's (they were planted 1st) but only 2 that appear to be female. Is this normal, or is it a luck of the draw sort of thing. Any responses are appreciated...

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hendi_alex
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I've noticed on both young squash and on young cucumber plants that sometimes there are few female flowers. With a little maturity, the balance of female flowers usually corrects itself.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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atascosa_tx
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others will open up with time..and bringeth the bees..

happy gardening
Feed your soil and your soil will feed you

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jal_ut
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It is pretty common for the first blossoms to be male, and outnumber the female blossoms.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

TZ -OH6
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Yup, the boys show up first. Very common biological strategy. The plant "wants" to get pollen to other plants more than it 'wants' to get itself pollinated because being pregnant takes a lot more energy for fewer offspring than impregnating the other guy/girl. In many plants the male flowers are much showier (more attractive to pollinators) than the female flowers for this reason. A bee only needs to visit a female flower once, but the more times it visits a male flower the better the chances of fathering more seeds on another plant.

zstokes85
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Thanks for the reponses. Looks like we'll be blooming this week, so maybe I'll have A squash soon... Thanks again yall...

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hendi_alex
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I only plant a few squash vines, consequently when they first start to bloom, I'm lucky if the flower gets pollinated. I have three crooknecks and one zucchini. Planted a couple other zucchinis but they didn't make it. Have direct planted some seed, but they are not up yet. Anyway, the smaller the planting, the less effective pollination will be, and some of the early fruit may not turn into mature squash. My first three or four squash did not set fruit, but they do seem to be setting fruit now.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

zstokes85
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Joined: Sun May 10, 2009 3:25 pm
Location: Spartanburg, S.C.

Quick update:
It looks like it will be continuous male blooms for a while. Wow, they really take off! Seems like such a waste watching them bloom beautifully only to die off not having completed their purpose... Thanks again guys.

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Earl K
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somebody told me on this forum that the first 10-15 flowers are usually males which was about the average on my 2 zuke plants.

zstokes85
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After reading this last response, that gets me thinking... If I know 10-15 male flowers are going to bloom then die off before any female flowers come about, then would it help to pinch off some of these male blossoms?

cynthia_h
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I'd just pick them when they're fully opened and put them into fritters or deep-fry them (well, pan fry, actually) or something. Squash blossoms are edible, just like the squash themselves. :)

(Yummy, too! :D)

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9



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