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Old 06/28/10, 07:56 AM
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Male only squash blossoms question

This is my first year to try acorn squash--Table Queen by American Seed. I have three plants in a "lasagna" garden along with three spaghetti squash. The acorn have put on only male blossoms. Lots and lots of blossoms for about 6 weeks now, but all male. The plants look healthy, although all the squash are wilting in mid-day due to the heat. The spaghetti have produced 7 fruits so far, four of which I've already harvested, so I don't think it's the growing medium.

Do you know of anything I can do to encourage the acorn squash to produce female blossoms? I did fertilize last week with a soluble 15-30-15 fertilizer "just in case", but still no female blossoms.

And I was so looking forward to eating acorn squash this fall/winter.

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Old 06/28/10, 08:03 AM
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Are you harvesting and eating the squash blossoms? I believe they are usually battered and fried. Said to be a real treat.

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Old 06/28/10, 02:20 PM
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Having male blossoms first is normal and a good thing. That assures that there is sufficient pollen around when the female blossom is formed. However, the female blossom won't form until there are a sufficient amount of nutrients built up within the root and vine system to support a fruit. That takes a bit longer than to form a simple male blossom.

Martin

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Old 06/28/10, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paquebot View Post
Having male blossoms first is normal and a good thing. That assures that there is sufficient pollen around when the female blossom is formed. However, the female blossom won't form until there are a sufficient amount of nutrients built up within the root and vine system to support a fruit. That takes a bit longer than to form a simple male blossom.

Martin
Thanks Martin. So what do I need to do to help the acorn squash build up sufficient nutrients? More fertilizer? What I don't understand is the spaghetti squash in the same bed are producing fruit. And the summer squash in another identically made bed have been producing well. I gather that maybe acorn squash need a richer soil?
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Old 06/28/10, 05:32 PM
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Usually just takes time. Even in the poorest soil, a squash plant will work to produce at least one fruit. But also think of how many farm gardeners always used to grew their big pumpkins and squash. They made a "hill". That hill was a mound over a fair-sized pile of manure. (Native Americans did the same thing but not always animal manure.) They knew that squash were heavy feeders and fertilized accordingly. So, it won't hurt to feed your squash now if your soil was poor or marginal.

Martin

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Old 06/29/10, 06:50 AM
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Thanks -- I went out early this morning and used Miracle Grow on the acorn plants. I'll also dig in some rabbit manure later. You are a wealth of information!

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