Practically Perfect Pumpkins

We grow all sorts of stuff in the garden…we grow beans and corn and peppers and tomatoes.  We’ve grown gourds and squash and zukes too.  This year though, we tried pumpkins.  Last year we bought an absolutely perfect pumpkin at the local farmers’ market.  We carved it up and roasted most of the seeds.  I saved a few though figuring I would give it a go this year.  Holy cow those seeds made more perfect pumpkins this year!

Most of the garden is pretty well done for us this year.  I expected  that pumpkins would take much longer to develop…you know, so they would be timed right for the coming of the Great Pumpkin (Charlie Brown).  I suppose real pumpkin farmers plant their seeds a bit later than we did.  Anyhow, our pumpkins turned orange and were looking awesome last week so I decided to harvest them.  They are winter squash so I expect that they will last a good long time (’til Halloween at least I hope!)

I have enjoyed thinking about saving seeds and have done it some but this year I was impressed and really see the point of saving seeds from the best fruits.  We’ll keep seeds from the best of these pumpkins again this year.  I’ll be playing Gregor Mendel with pumpkins here in W-by-God-VA.  Mark my words folks…WV pumpkins are gonna be incredible in a few years!  You can say you heard about it here first!  Well, either that or I will end up living in a monastery when Emily gets fed up and throws me out…I am hoping for the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown!

7 thoughts on “Practically Perfect Pumpkins

  1. I used to raise pumpkins as a business for ten years. In fact, I used the business to pay my way through engineering college. I have a word of caution. If you raised any other squash near your pumpkins, I would plant some new seed as insurance. With plenty of bees nearby (I assume), pumpkins readily pollinate with squashes and gourds and the results can be… well interesting. We save a bunch of seed from a ten acre patch one year and replanted it but because that patch had been next to a small area with ornamental gourds, we had a lot of hybrids that fall that were for the most part unsaleable. We did off load a quite a few at a local crafts festival due to their uniqueness but the major markets we had weren’t interested in them. So we learned to always plant our seed stock well away from any other squash or gourds and to hedge our futures and buy plenty of new seed. My favorite was the Henry Field Hybrid named after the seed company. They were excellent pumpkins and were easily identified by their very strong almost black colored stems that held up when shipping by the semi load to stores so that customers would have handles for their pumpkins. On another related note, timing of the planting seemed to play little difference in when they ripened. Weather and moisture were the big players. The last year of my business we had them ripen around this time due to a wet spring and dry late summer. Since we didn’t have a cool dry space big enough to store ten acres of pumpkins, they pretty much rotted and we didn’t quite break even that year. Thanks for the post. It brought back lots of memories.

  2. Great looking pumpkins Warren! We didn’t get ours in the ground this year. It was too wet and when it dried up it was too late. That was interesting what Ed wrote too! Something to think about for sure!

    Have a Great Weekend!

  3. Those are great… what a neat outcome from last year’s seed. I planted two varieties this year, but between the squash bugs and lack of water we only grew a few small pumpkins. I need to learn a bit more about pumpkin growing!

  4. I can’t get a pumpkin to grow here to save my life. Maybe it’s just too hot. That, and the darn bugs eat at them. Yours are wonderful. Have fun playing Mendel. Genetics can be so wacky.

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