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Here we go again. All those with brave hearts and green thumbs climb on board for the 2020 pumpkin growers thread. Here we can discuss anything about our endeavors to grow pumpkins for the Halloween season. From the tiny mini-pumpkins to those tipping the scales at a ton, no pumpkin is out of bounds for discussion. Even some squashes and gourds are fair game to talk about. If you care about it, there's probably someone else who does as well.

If you're new to growing pumpkins, there are some regulars who are more than happy to give advice. If you're a seasoned veteran, you'll have kindred souls ready to share your success and those times when you need to commiserate over the ones that fell to the armies of critters that love eating pumpkins before we even get a chance to pick them. And of course, this is where you go to post pictures of your pumpkins for an appreciative audience. Show their little sprouts popping up, show the vines growing. Show them as they're ripening. And show them when they're out on display in all their Halloween glory.

So, regardless of where on the pumpkin growing spectrum you are, feel welcome and encouraged to post your thoughts and pictures. This is one of the most active threads on Halloween Forum for good reason. Gardeners love to share their knowledge, their frustrations, but mostly their triumphs to create from a tiny seed something amazing. Come on, dive in, and be a part of it all. Growing season is sooner than you think.
 

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Thanks, Kdestra. I wish I lived in a climate that I could just plant it in the ground and it's good every year...but with days like we are having, now, where the wind chills will be getting to -20 or so, it just isn't possible.

I'm going to just use seeds I already have, too, I think. After last years squash bug nightmare, I was considering taking a year off to get rid of some of them...but I know, as said above, that come Spring I'll be itching to get those seeds started, anyway, lol.

I am so ready for growing season when I look out my windows and see snow and ice everywhere, dark skies, that frigid wind starting to pick up and frozen rain stuck to my windows...blah...
 

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What are your pumpkin plans this year?
I'm not sure. I think I will continue growing JBLs in planters because it worked so well last year. I'll plant more this year and maybe try some other varieties of mini gourds/pumpkins. I'm thinking of moving my pumpkin patch again. What are your plans?
 

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I'm not sure. I think I will continue growing JBLs in planters because it worked so well last year. I'll plant more this year and maybe try some other varieties of mini gourds/pumpkins. I'm thinking of moving my pumpkin patch again. What are your plans?
Not sure yet. I want to find a really pretty garden arch for the front steps & grow jbls.
We aren't planning a big vacation this summer so I should really work on a pumpkin patch.
One thing for sure is I'm investing in a much larger (200 gallon or bigger) water rain tank
 

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Not sure yet. I want to find a really pretty garden arch for the front steps & grow jbls.
We aren't planning a big vacation this summer so I should really work on a pumpkin patch.
One thing for sure is I'm investing in a much larger (200 gallon or bigger) water rain tank
I love having a rain barrel!

I still need to make or buy and arch for my JBL's/minis/gourds. We were going to do it this Spring, but we are saving for a trip, so I think it may have to be put off for another year. We will see when Spring comes.
 

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I love having a rain barrel!

I still need to make or buy and arch for my JBL's/minis/gourds. We were going to do it this Spring, but we are saving for a trip, so I think it may have to be put off for another year. We will see when Spring comes.
Oh yeah, I love my rain barrel but last year's drought was brutal. My barrels were bone dry. I want to "up my game" & harvest as much rain as possible.

A cattle pannel fence costs about $30. They aren't super pretty but they are strong.
Hope you have fun on your trip.
 

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I have a bunch of weird looking ornamental gourds I'm going to get the seeds out of and give a try. I also have some left over seeds of Chihuahuan and Navajo pumpkins that did well in our Tucson weather last year so I'll give those a go again. We've been hitting consistent 70's so I need to get started sooner rather than later.
 

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I have a bunch of weird looking ornamental gourds I'm going to get the seeds out of and give a try. I also have some left over seeds of Chihuahuan and Navajo pumpkins that did well in our Tucson weather last year so I'll give those a go again. We've been hitting consistent 70's so I need to get started sooner rather than later.
Wow. Your temps are in the 70s??? We wont have temps like that for a few weeks. Do you have pictures of your Chihuahuan and Navajo pumpkins?
 

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Wow. Your temps are in the 70s??? We wont have temps like that for a few weeks. Do you have pictures of your Chihuahuan and Navajo pumpkins?
Yeah we don't get much of a winter in Southern Arizona. I'll get get some seedlings started inside probably next weekend and get them hardened off to go in the ground by end of Feb/beginning of march. Its our summer heat that I battle. If the plants are well established they seem to do fine, but the sun and heat just murder seedlings. Finding native variety's has helped. I'll have to see if I have any pics on my home computer.
 

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Whoa, starting already?
Yeah, temps warm up by mid March so I try to have plants ready for cold frames by then.
Found more old seeds stashed away. I'll probably start them this weekend.
Looks like 2 of the 2018 JBL seedlings died. ☠☠ but the other 2 are going stron
 

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Yeah we don't get much of a winter in Southern Arizona. I'll get get some seedlings started inside probably next weekend and get them hardened off to go in the ground by end of Feb/beginning of march. Its our summer heat that I battle. If the plants are well established they seem to do fine, but the sun and heat just murder seedlings. Finding native variety's has helped. I'll have to see if I have any pics on my home computer.
Have you checked out Baker's Creek? They have a huge assortment of native pumpkins & gourds.

 

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The 4 big moose pumpkins.

We had a miserable fall for pumpkins, with hard freezes the entire week leading up to Halloween. I ended up bringing these inside. The three smaller ones were carved and out on the 30th, and froze solid. Funny thing about frozen solid pumpkins is they get a little translucent, so the whole thing glows as opposed to the largest one here that my son carved day of.



Anyway, overall review of Big Moose now that we have cracked them open and carved them:

Advertised size of 100-150lb seems accurate. Without trying or any special watering/fertilizing, 2 within this range, and one at 80 lb out of 4 plants.

1 plant never set a single pumpkin. The other 3 all set at least 2. (trimming off the second pumpkins should lead to bigger pumpkins)

Seemed fairly powdery mildew resistant.
Fairly sensitive to temps over 100 degrees, needed a shade built.
Aggressive with secondary roots along the vines, and survived several vines getting crushed by people walking on them.
Late season setting (late august-sept) pumpkins did not have good surviving rates.

about 4" thick walls, great for carving and sculpting. SUPER EASY cleaning. Flesh smelled rather similar to cantaloupe.

Did not roast seeds or taste.

Definitely going to try again next year assuming I can find seeds.
After going through my seed catalogs and reviewing the down sides to this variety, the need to build it a shade canopy, I'm debating with going with a grab bag seed mix "World of Color"



Listed as 50-100 lb size ratio, this would put it in league with the two smaller big moose pumpkins above. I know this mix has been around for quite a while, anyone have any experience with it?

There's also always atlantic giants that do well with the weather here, but you sometimes get amorphous blobs for shape. The way I grow, though, without any of the special attention needed to get truly huge sizes, that risk is somewhat mitigated.

Big Max pumpkins advertise 100lb+ which would put them in the same ballpark as Big Moose, but they don't seem to keep their shape as well from what I can find...

Trying to decide if I even bother with gourds this year. 10 years, never a single gourd...
 

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After going through my seed catalogs and reviewing the down sides to this variety, the need to build it a shade canopy, I'm debating with going with a grab bag seed mix "World of Color"



Listed as 50-100 lb size ratio, this would put it in league with the two smaller big moose pumpkins above. I know this mix has been around for quite a while, anyone have any experience with it?

There's also always atlantic giants that do well with the weather here, but you sometimes get amorphous blobs for shape. The way I grow, though, without any of the special attention needed to get truly huge sizes, that risk is somewhat mitigated.

Big Max pumpkins advertise 100lb+ which would put them in the same ballpark as Big Moose, but they don't seem to keep their shape as well from what I can find...

Trying to decide if I even bother with gourds this year. 10 years, never a single gourd...
Those are beautiful. How much water do you think they need? The drought of 2019 was bad for us in the Mid/North East.
 

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I'm going to assume they need some hefty watering to get their size, like most of the giant varieties. There is a "small world of color" mix that is more typical Jack sizes, though.

 

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I'd forgotten I'd ordered these from Amazon until I went to do a return on Amazon. Never grown them before so we'll see how it goes this year. Anyone here done them before?

Hoping to grow some birdhouse gourds this year too. We've got some major garden overhauling to do this year so it may or may not happen, but I'm hoping to get a real garden going this year.

Japanese Black Pumpkin
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