Pumpkins rotting at vine base

mainegard3(5b-6a)August 9, 2013

My pumpkins were healthy with flowers and green leaves. Two weeks ago I noticed the vines at the base were yellow and unhealthy looking. I cut them open to find what looks like the black poppy seed like stuff. Thoughts?

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KovarGarden(8b)

Well...this happened to me here in Florida as well...It looks like the Squash Vine Borer payed your pumpkins a fatal visit. They eat your stems from the inside. The black poppy seed stuff is their excrement. You can always tell they are in there because of the frass near the entry hole. The leaves wilt and then the whole thing starts changing to yellows and browns as if it were diseased. DO NOT COMPOST these critters. I have not found anything yet that keeps them away either. Hope it helps.

Here is a link that might be useful: Kovar Garden YouTube Channel

    Bookmark   May 22, 2014 at 8:42AM
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makimaggie

I was hit hard last year in coastal NC with my squashes and pumpkins. I saw a good video on how to stop those pests, but have not tried it yet. Basically you pour about a tablespoon of organic Neem oil on the open part, wrap with two 4X4 gauze pieces, and then cover that with a strip of 4-5" aluminum foil wrapped around the stem. Last year I did not know about this, so I tried to remove the worm inside the stem with some hemostats. It lasted long enough to ripen up the squash, then I burned them so they would not infect my compost pile. Good luck!

    Bookmark   23 hours ago
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