Zucchini plants with only male flowers

Discussion in 'Fruit and Vegetable Gardening' started by sleepdeficit2, Aug 7, 2009.

  1. sleepdeficit2

    sleepdeficit2 Member

    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Comox Valley Canada
    Help, I must be the most inept gardener ever, because year after year I can't grow zucchini. Well, last year they did OK for awhile, but then everything rotted. This year (as in most year) they aren't producing any fruits. Lots of male flowers, lots of bees (the neighbour now has beehives, and everything else is getting pollinated) The female flowers are sitting there, but refuse to open.

    We have extremely poor, sandy, rocky soil, that has been augmented each year with compost . This year, we put about 40 - 50 wheelbarrow loads of composted horse manure (mixed with wood shavings) on it, and things are growing marginally better. We water every second day, but the whole garden doesn't grow as "lush" as the gardens where they have a clay based soil, even when they do way less for it than we do for ours.

    I am beginning to wonder if it is a pH problem, but I can't find anything about this (and zucchini) on the internet.

    I would be so grateful if you could give me some suggestions.

    thanks
    Heidi
     
  2. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,526
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Victoria Australia [cool temperate]
    Sounds as tho something is missing if it is not super lush with all that stuff added. Just watch the wood shavings if they are raw. They will take nitrogen from the soil till it rots down. Then the soil is good. I use a lot of wood shavings as mulch here but I always spread blood and bone first (bone meal)

    I take it every thing is in full sunlight. I used to break the runners off once i had a few female flowers. I did this mainly to open the plant up. I also layed fruit as it grew on a wood shaving pillow. Straw workes as well.

    Some of our very productive market gardens are grown on old sand dune soils and after years of compost etc it looks like A grade soil if a little water thirsty.

    Liz
     
  3. sleepdeficit2

    sleepdeficit2 Member

    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Comox Valley Canada
    Liz,
    thanks for the reply.
    What do you mean by runners? Yes, I have now got almost full sun (6-7 hours per day) compared to a few years ago, when there was only about 4 hours, and I often wondered if this was the cause for the lack of female flowers. The manure/wood shavings are supposed to be up to 10 yeras old, but you can still see some bits of wood in them, so perhaps this is doing what you say.

    I think I am going to buy some fertilizer tomorrow and see what that does. I am trying to make this garden organic, but organic isn't any good if you don't get enough out of it.

    cheers
    Heidi
     
  4. Nath

    Nath Active Member

    Messages:
    220
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Nottingham England
    Hi Sleepdefecit try these links, i had problems with mine rotting, then found out I was growing the plants too close together. Also I have lerned to treat the leaves with a fungacide if they show any signs of white mildew at all on the and this has helped me get better crops as has regular feeding with Miracle grow. Another trick i learned from old gardeners around here is to tie them to a stake and train them to grow up it keep tying them every few inches, this will raise the fruit away from the ground as it develops and minimise the chances of rotting. When a local gardener told me that one I thought he was kidding because I couldnt see how you could train them to grow up the stick but it deos work. he showed me his and they are laden with large ripe fruit.

    Nath

    http://www.howtodothings.com/home-and-garden/a1995-how-to-grow-zucchini.html

    http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/perennials/6130

    http://www.ehow.com/way_5139948_problems-growing-zucchini.html
     
  5. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,526
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Victoria Australia [cool temperate]
    By the runners I meant the tendrils that grow out the front of the plant that extends it. You might have bush ones those I used to thin the leaf load a bit to get sun in.

    Liz
     
  6. Nath

    Nath Active Member

    Messages:
    220
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Nottingham England
    Its a good idea Liz, I have removed the leaves here and there for the same reason especially if there is even a hint of a bit of leaf mold I remove them. If the energy of the plant isnt going into the leaf in theory it should improve the fruit i guess.

    Nath
     

Share This Page