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Not sure what's going on...

26 Jul 2010
Sunny 22°C / 71°F

The climate may just not be to the achocha’s liking: the fruits form, so the pollinators are getting to the flowers, but they must drop off shortly after developing. I’ve searched in vain for any fruits bigger than a sunflower seed.

It was an experiment, to be sure, so I’m not heartbroken over this, just mildly puzzled as to the cause. The tiny, baby fruits look perfectly healthy & the plant shows no sign of disease & has only minor pest issues that I can see.


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ceae

ceae

Folia Helper

Canada6a

I don’t know anything about achocha, but I’m going to guess that the plant has distinct male and female flowers (like a pumpkin/squash). It looks like the photo might show the female flower with the fruit attached and a male flower/flower bud above it. I bet that your achocha is similar to all the Cucurbitas in that the female flowers are formed with those tiny fruits and that your plant is not getting pollinated, as you would think.

I would try hand pollinating – take a open male flower, pinch it off and rub it against a female flower. The other problem is that achocha may be an outbreeding plant, so to be successful you would have to take a male flower from a different plant to get fruit to form.

Posted on 27 Jul 10 (almost 5 years ago)

Oh, that’s great information! Thanks so much! We’ll try it & see what happens: with any luck, the plant will be able to pollinate itself.

Posted on 27 Jul 10 (almost 5 years ago)

Thanks again, ceae: with your tips, I was able to find the right information online about pollinators, which I think we don’t have.
I only have the one vine, so if it turns out not to be self-pollinating, I’m out of luck, but I’ve learned a lot in 24 hours!
Thanks!

Posted on 28 Jul 10 (almost 5 years ago)
ceae

ceae

Folia Helper

Canada6a

I was curious, so I looked it up a couple of my seed saving books. It is outbreeding, but self compatible which means that while it would be better to have more than one plant you should be able to successfully pollinate with just the one vine. The books say that it is typically greenhouse grown in the States, but generally doesn’t produce fruit. I’m really looking forward to hearing more about how you make out!

Posted on 28 Jul 10 (almost 5 years ago)

I tried pollinating a flower: a lot of the female flowers’ fruit is already starting to decay: I may have missed the window of opportunity. But I’ll keep looking. It seems that the magical hour for the flowers to be open is in the early part of the morning, like with pumpkins and squashes.

Posted on 28 Jul 10 (almost 5 years ago)

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