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 Post subject: cucumbers
PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2004 4:26 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 23, 2003 2:31 pm
Posts: 8
Location: denton,TEXAS
i started some straight 8 cucumbers but they're far from straight! the cucumbers are either the size of round ping pong balls or are fairly straight with exteremley tapered ends. Is there something going on here?


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PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2004 8:41 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 4:33 pm
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Location: parker county, texas
It sounds to me like inadequate pollination. Do you have plenty of bees in the area? Have you seen bees visiting the flowers? If not, you might consider hand-pollination.


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PostPosted: Sun May 23, 2004 7:56 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 23, 2003 2:31 pm
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Location: denton,TEXAS
saw one honey bee and that was it. Now that you mention it, i attempted hand pollenation last year and had a good crop. guess I'll try it again. Thanks for reminding me!


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PostPosted: Sun May 23, 2004 8:51 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 4:33 pm
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Location: parker county, texas
Two years ago, that's what was happening to me, and I realized I was not seeing any honeybees. Just occasional beeflies, but the numbers weren't adequate, so I bought a hive of bees for my garden. A great majority of the wild beehives have died out over the past ten to fifteen years from a couple of honeybee pests. The estimate is that 95% is the mortality rate.


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PostPosted: Fri May 28, 2004 11:41 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:06 am
Posts: 51
Location: Keller, TX
What exactly do you mean when you say you bought a beehive? Is it something full of live bees, or is it something that attracts bees, and they will stay and live there?

I haven't seen any bees, and this worries me. I have plenty of beans, so pollination is occurring, but I still don't know if beans are wind pollinated like tomatoes, so it's hard to know if I have a problem or not...


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PostPosted: Sat May 29, 2004 3:34 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2003 1:52 pm
Posts: 2017
Location: Dallas,TEXAS
I was looking in Howard's Texas Organic Vegetable Gardening book and he said, regarding misshapen cucumbers:

it can be caused by low ,oisture or stress. Provide and maintain adequate moisture during blooming and fruiting and make sure they are fertilized properly.

_________________
Sandi
Texas Certified Nursery Professional
Texas Master Naturalist
Organic gardener
Tree-Hugger
Native Texan


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 29, 2004 8:42 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 4:33 pm
Posts: 526
Location: parker county, texas
You can buy bees in a couple of different manners, but it takes deciding that you want to devote some time and effort to it. You buy hives either as a "package" or as a "nuc". If you want to know more about beekeeping, visit Beesource.com sometime and read their exchange and some of the articles. There are also mason bees that are sold for pollination, and that would require much less from the owner than honeybees, but I don't know much about them. Beans and tomatoes don't require bees or other strong pollinators. Squash, cukes, and other cucurbits do require pollination by insects unless you want to hand-pollinate.


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PostPosted: Sat May 29, 2004 8:45 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 4:33 pm
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Location: parker county, texas
I meant to add something regarding misshapen fruits. The average watermelon flower requires eight different visits by bees to pollinate well, and I expect other cucurbits do also. Maybe inconsistent water will effect this, but that has not been my experience.


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