I'm growing crookneck squash and I'm growing it vertically in a pot. Two squashes are developing but I was noticing the leaves towards the bottom of the plant were turning yellow and shriveling, so I decided to cut them. I got a little too into cutting the leaves that I think I cut off too many. I cut them about two and a half inches from the stalk. This is my first time really growing anything at all and I didn't realize that the stems were hollow and I feel like bugs are going to get into them. I only cut under where the squash are growing and there were a lot of tiny dead female parts that just shriveled up that I cut off too. I cut off the male blossoms that never fertilized anything too. I read more about it after I did it, and I didn't see a whole lot of people in favor of cutting off as many leaves that I did. While I didn't touch the new growth that's happening at the top (a whole new set of leaves and male/female blossoms are beginning to grow), I feel like since I cut too much at the bottom, my whole plant will die!
Is there a way I can prevent more damage, if I did any? I'm really excited about my two squash that are growing and I don't want them to die but I definitely want more squash to grow. Will that happen being that I cut a lot of leaves off so close to the stalk? (again, like 2 1/2 inches but I know it would have been better if I had just cut the leaf off of the stem)