The first important step of growing your own pumpkins, is having a good seed.
You should always start with a fresh seed from a reputable company.
– You don’t need a big garden or farm area to grow your pumpkins, just an area with
good drainage, that gets full sun light and allows plenty of room for the vines to grow.
– Soil that has been used in the past to grow vegetables or plants will be suitable for planting your pumpkins. By adding compost to this soil, creates the perfect growing environment.
– Pumpkins are very sensitive to frost, most pumpkin varieties take between 85-125 days
– The number of days to maturity should be listed on the packet that you have purchased.
– Plant your seeds 1-2 inches deep, it doesn’t matter which end is up the plant will find its
way to the surface.
– The seeds should sprout in 7-10 days, this is when adding additional
compost is good. If you don’t have compost then don’t worry!, The vines are pretty
resilient, so you can keep it simple and fun.
– Pumpkins are about 80-90% water, so they use a lot of water in their growth. The secret is to water the pumpkins only when they need it, you can also check the soil with the trowel or hoe. The plants are happy when the moisture is good and you can leave it to do its own thing.
– When the soil starts to dry out, the plants start to look a bit droopy make sure you give the pumpkins a deep, long drink. For a healthier plant, deep but infrequent watering is
– Its important not to get water on the leaves of the plant and to water in the morning rather than later at night to help to fight against fungal disease.
– When the pumpkins fruit starts to turn orange, gradually decrease the amount of water, they will last longer if you cut off the water 7-10 days before you harvest them.
– The most important indication that the pumpkins are ready to be harvest and the key thing to look for is that the shell has started to harden.
– If you can indent the pumpkin skin using your fingernail, the fruit is still too immature to harvest.
– If you harvest them at this stage your pumpkins will likely shrivel and spoil within days, when the shell has hardened the fruit is ready to cut from the vine.
– Always use shears to cut the stem of the pumpkin, but leave the stem as long as you possibly can. A six inch or longer stem is better, if the stem breaks or is broken at its base it will rot very quickly.
Why not try something different with your pumpkins? Like making a pumpkin and lentil soup, its a straight forward recipe, perfect for those cold days when you want something really warming.
Or even making a Pumpkin cheesecake which is suitable for vegetarians,
a fantastic Halloween desert which is a perfect way of using up hollowed-out