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Growing Pumpkin

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
  S S   P              

(Best months for growing Pumpkin in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays P = Sow seed

  • 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 68°F and 90°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 35 - 47 inches apart
  • Harvest in 15-20 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Sweet Corn
  • Avoid growing close to: 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

19 Feb 19, John Kelly (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I've grown pumpkins which have fruited nicely ,havent harvested all of them,the vines are slowly dying back but now the plants are re shooting quite nicely ,will they produce fruit ?
08 Feb 19, eden ande (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
i live in Eritrea and work on national agricultural research instiution. in Eritrea pumpkins grows well in the subtropics,tropics and also semi arid places. my question is about powdery mildew, all our pumpkins gets affected by this fungus so i would like to ask if their are any cultivation practices we need to practice to avoid this fungus
10 Feb 19, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Read up about organic or in organic sprays for it. Google. Plant in a different area each time. Go to dengarden on the net .com - go to gardening and organic ways to kill and prevent powdery mildew. A mixture of 60 water to 40 milk is quite good.
07 Feb 19, Haydn Battye (Australia - temperate climate)
Can I plant pumpkin seeds now? I live in Mildura VIC which is quite warm at this time of year
07 Feb 19, Mike (Australia - temperate climate)
Did you read the pumpkin guide here. They are the best times to plant.
02 Feb 19, Katrina (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Hi guys, our neighbours are growing pumpkins (look like crown variety with pale skin and flat bottom) and the vines came over into our place and a nice big pumpkin grew, so of course I picked it right away not knowing anything about pumpkins. The inside was a weird pale yellow rather than orange, I presume now that I have just picked it too soon and it is unripe! Is that correct? Thanks.
04 Feb 19, Michelle (Australia - temperate climate)
Not a problem if it is unripe! can still make lovely pumpkin soup (I actually thin it is better with unripe pumpkin!)
05 Feb 19, Mike (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Put some curry in it to give it some taste. lol
03 Feb 19, Mike (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Check with your neighbour next time. Next time wait until the stem has become hard and woody. About 16-20 weeks after seeds germinate.
29 Jan 19, Richard (New Zealand - cool/mountain climate)
I'm growing grey pumpkins,do they grow bigger fruit if you cut end of runners off once plant has several pumpkins on it.
Showing 1 - 10 of 587 comments

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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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