I don't have a single butternut squash forming

catherinet(5 IN)July 29, 2010

I planted Waltham butternut squash in May, just like last year. Last year I had about 40 big ones by September with more constantly forming. I don't even see a female flower this year. What gives?? I'm sure its too late for anything to grow to maturity now, unless it stays warm through November......which it won't. Bummer.

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mrs.b_in_wy(5a WY)

Hi Catherine,

Where in zone 5 are you? I skipped butternut this year to try a different C. moschata (a NOID cheese-type, plus, I'm starting to suspect that what was supposed to be Rouge Vif d'Etamps is another NOID C. moschata). Finally this morning, I hand pollinated the very first female flower on a cheese-type. Still nothing from the possibly-faux Rouge.

We've been far warmer this year than last thus far. The C. maximas and all but one of the C. pepos have been setting lots of fruit. Hard to tell what gives. Hope your butternuts turn around for you, though!

    Bookmark   July 29, 2010 at 9:12PM
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sazji(8bNW Turkey)

Moschatas seem to be funny sometimes with their flowering. When I grew Futsu last year, I got several female flowers before any males came out! But I ended up getting lots of fruit. This year I've had much better luck with Bunkan, Futsu has been a bit reticent. Pennsylvania Dutch crookneck (a butternut ancestor) started a bit late but now has lots of fruits forming. Seminole is climbing through a dead tree like a house afire -- it's a good 20 feet up now -- but so far has produced only one female flower, and that one didn't get pollinated; no more in sight yet. We'll see. Our summer so far has been unusually wet, hot and humid (usually things are getting quite dry by June). Every variety seems to have its "sweet spot." I've had them stop producing female flowers in the hottest part of the summer, only to start producing again once it cools a bit and we get a bit more water. The only thing I can think of is, try to make sure the plants arent' water-stressed. Good luck!

    Bookmark   July 30, 2010 at 4:14AM
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susancol(7 Atlanta)

I do, I have ONE single butternut squash growing and it is a miniture one called Metro from Johnny's. All of my other plants are suffering either from powdery mildew or from SVB damage. I'm trying to rebuild after the attack. Not sure it they will have time to recover or if they will avoid being attacked again...we can have several waves of SVB, lucky us. But the good news is that my Trombochino Rapicante is resisting all attackers and doing well. It had set it's second fruit (first didn't get pollinated due to lazy bees. They get in one flower and stay there wallowing, instead of going from one to another...I digress.) I decided since I had gotten many regular zuch's that I would let this one be grown out to winter squash, bringing my butternut type squash total to 2 YAHOO!So that was the good news. Bad news is my husband "helped" me in the garden yesterday and harvested the biggest Zuch he's ever seen! sigh. so like I said. ONE, one winter squash.


    Bookmark   July 30, 2010 at 8:32AM
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mrs.b_in_wy(5a WY)

Oh, geez Susan! That's too funny :) Well, maybe not to you at the time, but I snorted in my breakfast when I read your post.

If the moschatas don't pick up the pace in August, I'll have to try a different kind next year. The Futsu looks really good, but maybe I'll have to go back to good ol' butternut. OTOH, Trombocino Rapicante has its own allure...

    Bookmark   July 30, 2010 at 9:27AM
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I'm growing a couple of Sucrine du Berry this year which is a Moschata. For the longest time it only put out female flowers. The male flowers were there, but would not grow up and bloom. Yet fruits continually set and grew, with no other Moschata on my 1 acre plot or the acre plot on any side of me. I have no idea how they did it other than the honeybees I see must be very busy.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2010 at 12:46PM
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Hi catherinet,
Well it is now August 7th and I too have nothing! Same thing is happening with this type of squash, only. Waltham.
I have loads of the others who are all planted in the same general area and planted in the same time frame, so I feel you pain! Butternut is my absolute favorite. Last year I had have a dozen at this point. It must have something to do with the hot weather we are having in Zone 5. What else could it be? Now I am fighting Powdery Mildew...Jeez always something. Keep us posted. Can you say where you purchased your seeds? Maybe we all got them from the same online place? Would be interesting to know.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 2:36PM
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cookie8(zone 5 ON)

I am another with nothing. I bought my plant and it gets a lot of flowers but not one fruit. I probably won't try again next year.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 11:11PM
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Same here in Boston - probably 40 male flowers, 0 females on 8/14.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2010 at 8:24AM
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I have the opposite situation. I always plant Burgess Buttercup and I am having the best year ever. Now if I could get all of my tomatoes to ripen.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 1:00PM
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susancol(7 Atlanta)

Well I harvested my one mini-butternut. It's like personal sized, but it's officially harvested, so it's safe from critters, bugs, and well meaning husbands. Now I have a new Trombichino that I think got pollinated. Crossing my fingers that it will ripen before frost, but I think that I have a decent shot with our long season climate. Now if I can just keep my husband away from it...


    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 9:27AM
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Just got two baby female flowers on both my vine tips this week (8/15).

Let's see if the fungus get to them...

    Bookmark   August 19, 2010 at 12:48PM
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northerner_on(Z5A ONCanada)

This is my first time sowing butternut and I must say I am lucky in Ontario. The first fruits were attacked by a resident squirrel or ground-hog so I bagged them but have quite a few. They are doing very well as well as my gourds, except that the grourd plants seeme to have been infected by cucumber beetles, but the fruit are still growing well. There is also some powdery mildew. My mystery is with my zukes: 3 plants, all producing lots of blossoms, but only one producing fruit (very heavily). My problem is that my butternut has produced three this week -just about 3 inches long so far. I know they do not have enough time to ripen here so I am wondering if I should remove them, sort of to keep the plant's energies for those already in 'full flight'. Are they any good to eat when young, like a summer squash? If anyone has any advice I'd appreciate an e-mail. Thank you.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 10:14AM
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susancol(7 Atlanta)


Yes, you can eat immature butternuts as a summer squash!
Bon Appetit!

    Bookmark   August 24, 2010 at 9:52AM
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sazji(8bNW Turkey)

I'll second that! I accidentally knocked a still-green Pennsylvania Dutch Crookneck (a Butternut ancestor) off the vine, and it was as good or better than any zucchini I ever tasted.

The business of female flowers opening before males, or males that simply take a long time to develop in comparison with female flowers, seems to be a sort of "moschata thing." I noticed it on my Futsus last year and my Seminoles this year as well.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2010 at 6:12AM
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dancinglemons(7B VA)

I feel your pain! I just harvested my one and only butternut. Huge vines simply covered with male flowers! I picked the flowers and ate them!!!


    Bookmark   September 13, 2010 at 2:36AM
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catherinet(5 IN)

Well, after they got a very slow start, my Waltham's picked up speed and now I have a bunch of them. :)

    Bookmark   October 2, 2010 at 4:09PM
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March 16, 2011. Last year(2010)Seattle had horrible weather for heat loving plants. My squash only had a male and female at the same time twice all summer. (I had 17 squash plants.) I checked every day because I wanted to hand pollinate and get true seeds. Very frustrating year. In 2009 I had hundreds of hot peppers to harvest and last year I only got about 25. Some plants no fruit at all. I hope 2011 is a better summer here.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 1:05AM
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Here in Oklahoma we had pretty much the worst squash year I've ever seen, and I've been at it actively since 1982. The heat was so intense that some of my squash aborted bowling ball sized fruit and then proceeded to retreat back into the ground, where they died. This was with irrigation. Hopefully 2011 will be much better! 2010 was so abnormal that I'd be sure not to draw too many conclusions about varieties, based on that year.

Tahlequah, OK

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 3:08PM
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