Pumpkin pollination Problems....
My 6 year old son did a fabulous garden project at school this year, and we have been supporting him at home in his quest to grow plants and vegetables as best we can! (He has really got the bug, it is great to see!) We have a paved garden, but have lots of pots, and he successfully has grown lots of flowers - but his pride and joy are three pumpkin plants in huge builder bucket containers. He is very proud indeed.
Being novices, we are have read and reread about pumpkin maintenance, and I know that i need to pick one or two females from the plant to keep. Here is my problem. I have 4 or five on each plant the size of tennis balls (or bigger) - and lots more starting at the ends of vine - but NONE of the male flowers have opened yet, and the older female flowers are closing/falling off. We have opened one male and tried to pollinate ourselves, but how will i know if it has worked? If it hasnt worked will they females just stop growing?
I may be being impatient, but I would hate for these to go wrong after all his hard work!
Thanks in advance for any help...