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Growing Pumpkin

(Cucurbita sp.)

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
                P P P P

(Best months for planting Pumpkin in Australia - temperate regions)

P = Plant direct in garden where they are to grow.


September: Frost tender

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 20°C and 32°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 90 - 120 cm apart
  • Harvest in 15-20 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow in same bed): Sweet Corn
  • Avoid growing in same bed: Potatoes
  • Pumpkin on vine

A large trailing plant with yellow, bell-shaped flowers, pumpkin is frost tender. Most varieties will take up a lot of room . Grow them at the edge of your garden patch so that they can spread away from other vegetables. Butternut produces small to medium pear-shaped fruit with deep orange flesh . Buttercup are small to medium round pumpkins with dark green skin. There are a number of large pumpkins, some round and flattish - good for storage and eating - others will produce the "Cinderella coach" type giant round fruit which are not such good eating.

Harvest when the vines die off and the pumpkins' stalks are dry. Leave a small piece of stalk attached to the fruit to prevent damp causing rot. The fruit can be stored for months in a cool airy place. In some parts of New Zealand, they are stored on shed roofs.

Pumpkins sometimes need hand pollination if the fruit are not setting well or die off after starting to grow.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Pumpkin

Cut up, remove the skin and roast with other vegetables or meat.

Young crisp shoots with young leaves can be cooked and eaten - stewed in coconut milk they are popular in Melanesia. Remove any strings and tough parts and stew until tender, or cook as a vegetable in boiling water 3-5 minutes.


Your comments and tips

20 Apr 15, keith (Australia - temperate climate)
Hello Wazza,, I've had simular results with My pumpkin , but just be a bit more patient and I'm sure the Male Flower's will soon appear,, I know it's frustrating waiting but it will happen soon.
17 Apr 15, wozza (Australia - tropical climate)
I have pumpkin vines that are healthy but NO female flowers .So as a result I have NO pumpkins forming .????? is that people .Cheers .
11 Apr 15, Erin oneill (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
When is the best time to plant pumpkin an butternut seeds (Check under plant names for your zone - Liz)
29 Mar 15, Merrill (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Have large pumpkin vine which produces green pumpkins about tennis ball size, but then they all turn dark brown and shrivel up and fall off. What can I do?
21 Mar 15, Gary (Australia - temperate climate)
Thank u Cindy and Keith. My pumpkins are about 2kgs in weight but turned from green stripes to yellow with tinges of green. They are solid and now have 9 on the vines but they are all going the same way. I have hand pollinated a couple but cannot understand why they are "yellowing". Am tempted to cut one open. your views appreciated!!!!
04 Mar 15, gary (Australia - temperate climate)
Pumpkin grew from compost that I put in the ground and have had four large pumpkins . I have given them plenty of water but they are all turning yellow. The stems are still green and they are hard with a "full" sound when tapped I believe they are Jap pumpkins and I`m wondering if this is natural to turn yellow. Would appreciate any response as I have never had pumpkins growing.
09 Mar 15, Cindy (Australia - temperate climate)
Sounds like it's a Butternut pumpkin. They grow from my worm compost too.
08 Mar 15, keith (Australia - temperate climate)
G'dday gary.....Im inclined to think your pumpkin did not get pollinated as it's only then they turn yellow, I would try hand pollinating next time to insure fruit set.. It's worth the try... Good luck Cheers ..keith
02 Mar 15, keith (Australia - temperate climate)
Ive had the very same problem with young pumpkin yellowing them falling off dur to lack of pollination,,, So I tried hand pollination but then the males didn't have any pollen showing on fingers or brush,,, I can only put it down to inmature males ??,,,, any answers to my problem would be most grateful
05 Mar 15, gary (Australia - temperate climate)
Had the same problem but found if i opened up the male flowers before they do it themselves , you get a hell of a lot more pollen that way.
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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.

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