Growing an edible garden

   Oct 26

Hand pollinating zucchinis, squash and pumpkin

If you notice baby zucchini or other squash starting to shrivel and die before ripening, it’s most likely because of a lack of natural pollinators, such as bees.

In this case your best bet is hand pollinating your zucchinis.
It’s very simple, quick and if you do it every morning, you’ll get a bumper crop.

First you need to find a male flower on one of your zucchini plants.
They are easily identified – male flowers don’t have any baby zucchinis at their base.
They grow directly at the stem.

Male zucchini flower

Once you found a male flower, get a q-tip and scrape it around the stamen until some yellow pollen sticks to it.

male zucchini flower

Next locate an open female flower (has a little zucchini at the base) and transfer some of the pollen on your q-tip to the stigma.

 female zucchini flower

That’s it – your female flower is now pollinated and the zucchini can grow.

Make sure you do this early morning. The flowers will open early morning and will only stay open for a few hours. Best to do it every day with all new flowers that have opened up, for a bumper crop of tasty zucchini.

The same technique can be applied to pumpkins and other squash.

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