Thursday, August 7, 2008
What Happened to the Zucchini?
I thought zucchini was an easy vegetable. Foolproof. Those who grow it often use the word "glut" to describe their harvests. And, of course, on a slow news day there's always a story or two about an eight-foot long monster zucchini that grew that big almost overnight. So what happened to my zucchini? They are this year's garden disaster story. Things started promisingly enough. Lots of seeds sprouted. The vines seemed to be growing well. That's them growing among the nasturtiums and marigolds (my only pepper plant is in the centre).
Trouble was soon to follow though. The leaves developed what looked to be a case of powdery mildew (I plead guilty to overcrowding the plants. The wet weather was no doubt a factor too). Then it took forever for the first flower to bloom but it did. Finally, I thought. Here they come. But they didn't. Upon further research and closer inspection, it appeared the plants were only producing male flowers. No females. No pollination. No zukes.
Some websites suggest that lots of male flowers to start is normal and that the female flowers will eventually bloom. So I waited for a while but the plants turned yellow and began to wither away. I chucked the whole heap of them onto the compost pile. There will be no zucchini glut this year.