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Digital Subscriptions > Kitchen Garden Magazine > 266 - November 2019 > KG PROBLEM SOLVER

KG PROBLEM SOLVER

GOT A FRUIT OR VEG PROBLEM? ASK KG FOR HELP

MALES ONLY

I wonder if you can help with my butternut squash problem. I have been trying to grow them for two years in a bed in the polytunnel and always seem to get only male flowers on them. The actual plants grow like crazy, they ar healthy and green, no nasties on them. I give them a lot of water and feed them but to no avail. Still only male flowers.

teve Ott, editor Kitchen Garden magazine

STEVE SAYS: Unfortunately this is quite a common problem with butternut squash. In fact most squashes tend to produce lots of male flowers and few female ones early in the eason and it is often only from midsummer that the females start to appear. This might not be a problem with fast-growing crops such as courgettes, but with slow-growing butternuts it may mean that the season is well advanced by the time fruit starts to form and it may never get the chance to ripen, especially in the north. Start with a variety bred for the UK climate such as ‘Hunter F1’ or ‘Harrier F1’ since these are more tolerant of lower temperatures and often fruit earlier than others.

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About Kitchen Garden Magazine

Welcome to Kitchen Garden Magazine In this issue: A WALLED GARDEN FIT FOR A PRINCE ✪ Janice Hopper travels to Scotland’s beautiful Caste of Mey THE GREEN TEAM Writer Emily Collins travels to Goole in East Yorkshire to visit a charity that uses gardening to help the local community BARRICADE AND MARMALADE Gardening expert Sally Cunningham has a recipe for a productive security hedge And much more!