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Blue Hubbard squash

Discussion in 'Edible Gardening' started by Sean c g, Aug 22, 2021.

  1. Sean c g

    Sean c g Apprentice Gardener

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    Hi all I am trying to grow blue Hubbard squash This year, I have two plants at the minute and both flowering male and female.

    Guessing it’s the female that has the squash ball behind the flower just wondering how I know this is fertilised as I have two small looking squash (smaller than gold ball) but the yellow flowers have died off. Is this going to keep growing into a squash or am I to cut it off to save energy for the plant?
     
  2. Scrungee

    Scrungee Well known for it

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    The female flowers have a tiny squash behind them and are shorter than male flowers. You can get to tell when they're going to ooen the following morning by their size and being able to see yellow clearly showing through them.

    If a female has previously opened, it could have been pollinated by bees carrying pollen from your male flowers, or another squash they've visited earlier that day. The squash behind an unpollinated female flower will continue to grow a bit then shrivel. Leave it and see what happens.

    To be certain of pollination cut a male flower when it opens in the early morning, carefully remove the petals and use it to put some pollen on the stigma of a female flower that has also opened that morning, but this requires both to be open on the same day. If no Hubbard males use one from another squash + hope for bee pollinators.
     
  3. Sean c g

    Sean c g Apprentice Gardener

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    Thanks for your reply,
    I did actually use a male stigma and rub it gently on the female a week or so ago. Then the next day the femal flower head dropped off leaving the small squash but I can’t tell if it’s been fertilised. So this will eventually shrivel away if it hasn’t been fertilised?
     
  4. Scrungee

    Scrungee Well known for it

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    The flower can shrivel as early as the afternoon of the day it opens. Sometimes a slug will eat it that evening. It's job has been done. The only way to tell is wait and see if it grows, but it will increase in size for a while even if it hasn't been pollinated. The skin losing it's glossy appearance is normally the first sign tgat it's going to abort.

    Anther.



    P.S. If you want to save seeds from it you'll need to prevent open pollination, as described here Vegetable Growing 2021
    which will also prevent flowers filling full of water if there's morning rain.
     
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