Fruit and vegetables

Dried courgettes

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Question: zucchini

Good evening, I'm growing two courgette plants on the balcony. As for female flowers with a thin stem, I have no problem, indeed, many are coming out.

Unfortunately I cannot say the same for the fruit and its flower: the courgette is born and begins to grow immediately after its (male) flower which, however, is short-lived, lasts a maximum of two days and then withers, falls and the courgette does not grow more and it turns yellow. The maximum length of the courgettes is currently 6cm. Why is that normal?

Thanks so much.

Manuela


Dried zucchini: Answer: zucchini

Dear Manuela,

courgette plants produce male and female flowers, which are obviously different; initially the plants produce only male flowers, produced at the apex of long fleshy stalks; after a few days the female flowers also emerge, which are then those which, if pollinated, give rise to zucchini (it is difficult for the male organs of a plant to give rise to a fruit and seeds). However, apart from your observations which are certainly partial (it is impossible for the flowers to develop on the already developed courgettes), I believe that the problems may derive from some nutritional or water deficiencies. Zucchini are very demanding plants as regards the mineral salts contained in the soil, and in fact the plot (or, as in your case, the potting soil) must be well enriched with manure, or slow release granular fertilizer. In addition to this, as soon as the plant begins to produce fruit, it is important that it receives a good dose of direct sunlight and regular watering. When watering the vegetable garden, it is preferable to avoid very frequent watering with small quantities of water; rather, it is watered every two or three days (even every day in the middle of summer), but wetting the soil thoroughly. By placing the hand in the ground, it must be found moist to a good depth, otherwise we have watered very little, and our courgettes will wilt. Zucchini are fruits that contain a large amount of water, and therefore need regular watering in order to develop large and turgid. If you have not fertilized the soil enough when you have planted your courgette seedlings, you can now provide granular fertilizer, or fertilizer to mix with the water. Since you grow zucchini in pots, it may also be that you have guaranteed an excessively small space for each plant, and therefore they are unable to ripen the fruits for this reason.

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