Monday, June 1, 2009

Sex in the Garden

Last year, any thoughts I might once have had about playing Dr. Ruth to my fledgling vegetable plants was thwarted. Squash bugs and pickleworms aside, within 6 cucumber plants I completely failed to produce a single female flower. Even though the masses declare all the good men are gone, all I had were scores of young, male flowers patiently waiting for the female to come so they could all dote on her.

The ladies must have had one heck of a "headache."

This year, however, I'm astounded. Out of 18 squares and one hanging pot of bush and vining cucumbers which are flowering, I've got a zillion female flowers, 3-4 females per plant (not per square!) and only the side bed cucumbers are producing males. The zucchini and squash are also producing flowering females before the males.

I wondered if there was a reason which extended to sun exposure, but they all get roughly the same amount, and they're all in different soil mixtures. It's just odd. Gratifyingly odd, but still odd. I've taken to hand pollinating (I'm thinking of it as arranged marriage) from the one or two males I can find (okay, a polygamous arranged marriage) and so far, I've got one cucumber growing and the other ladies' stems are getting thicker, so I can only imagine that they are preparing to grow larger as well.

The corn is growing well.

Ignore the dog's tushy.

All of the tomatoes are looking nice. I've had to remove more than a few to BER, but I'm hoping I can fix that problem soon.

The pole beans' leaves are still looking sad, but they're flowering.

And the purple beans are growing larger, but this one's still very thin. I'm assuming I need to let them fill out a bit before picking them.

We harvested two more eggplants and had them in our eggs for the last two mornings. Things seem to be going well, however I have noticed that the bug factor is rapidly increasing. It does have me worried about the next two months.

We will soon see, I'm sure.


  1. Oh yes...the bugs are here, too. Just wait 'til you see my posts for tomorrow and the day after...

  2. Look at those gorgeous tomatoes!!!!

  3. We don't have the bugs yet, but we do have tent caterpillars, and they are slicing through the greens at an amazing rate. There's always something, isn't there!!