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2020 thread: 2020 pumpkin growers thread

Seed catalogs are out and its time to start ordering again!

I decided after the lousy year last year it was time to reset my garden, so I'm going to be fairly limited this year. We're sheet composting the entire garden. It's just after the major upheaval of building the path and fire pit, which saw lots of digging and churning in our garden area, the soil just isn't the same. A lot of sand and road base got mixed in over there, so I'm starting over.

That said, I'm going to try an old method we used at the farm for squash when we'd had bad years, but I'll get more into that when we get there.

I'm going to be trying some of these squash, with the intent try to carve some and eat some.



And for my giant trials this year, going to try Big Max. They seem similar enough to the Big Moose to be what we want, but much easier to find.
 

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2020 thread: 2020 pumpkin growers thread

Seed catalogs are out and its time to start ordering again!

I decided after the lousy year last year it was time to reset my garden, so I'm going to be fairly limited this year. We're sheet composting the entire garden. It's just after the major upheaval of building the path and fire pit, which saw lots of digging and churning in our garden area, the soil just isn't the same. A lot of sand and road base got mixed in over there, so I'm starting over.

That said, I'm going to try an old method we used at the farm for squash when we'd had bad years, but I'll get more into that when we get there.

I'm going to be trying some of these squash, with the intent try to carve some and eat some.



And for my giant trials this year, going to try Big Max. They seem similar enough to the Big Moose to be what we want, but much easier to
Construction is messy ~ no matter how hard you try to keep everything organized.

Harvest Moon is dreamy. Best of luck growing this year.

It seems I got myself roped into a growing competition with a few friends. Which is funny because I hate doing things like that. But before I could say NO a giant pumpkin seed was given to me. I don't even know what kind of seed it is. Its inside this envelope & I guess we will find out
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I might actual try and grow some pumpkins this year. I would love to grow some mini ones anyone have some seeds they like best for these ?
I think Jack be Little's are probably the easiest minis to grow. They can grow in a container, and do well with a trellis or along the ground.


If you need to save space, I've had great luck with Lil Pumpkemon. The grew more as a semi bush, only about 5' long vine but lost of little buggers on it.

 

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I think Jack be Little's are probably the easiest minis to grow. They can grow in a container, and do well with a trellis or along the ground.


If you need to save space, I've had great luck with Lil Pumpkemon. The grew more as a semi bush, only about 5' long vine but lost of little buggers on it.

great thank you i am going to give these both a try
 
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I'm not on this thread usually but last summer I posted that I had LOTS of vine and flowers almost no pumpkins. A few years back it was suggested to hand pollinate which I did last summer. Still not many fruit compared to vine. Someone suggested that I need something more added to my soil to help with setting fruit. The squash beds were chicken poop mixed with a little composted hay litter mixed with our more clay like soil. During the growing season gardens get water from the duck pools, so lots of duck and goose poop over the growing season. Was able to get semi composted horse manure layered over the beds 2 weeks ago. What else can we try to get more pumpkins. I'm in the PNW, I looked it up growing zone 8b I have mostly shade but do my best to plant where I get the most sun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm betting it's the PNW causing your issues more than soil conditions. Are you looking for jacks, pie, or mini varieties?

Pumpkins are a little finnicky on setting fruit due to weather conditions. I'm usually battling it being too hot, but PNW can be battling the opposite problem.

Reading around, it looks like getting them to ripen is an issue up yonder as well.

Given that, I'd say the best bets are:

For Jacks:
Ol Zeb's if you can find them. Developed in Canada for colder weather. Not the greatest stems for using as a handle, but up to 30lb size in the north.
Neon Pumpkins. Developed for a super short grow season. They are yellow to orange from the get go. (basketball sized)
Racer Pumpkins. New Hampshire variety specifically going for yields in the North. (usually basketball sized)

For Pie:
New England Pie. Again, cool weather specialist

For Minis:
Jack Be Littles, again. Maybe even specifically in a container in a sunny spot.
 
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Thanks... I'm into the craving and decorating kind. About the only thing I've gotten any number of has been the Jack be little kinds. Love the Cinderellas... of course my Chiro's neighbor threw an old "melting" Halloween one in his horse manure pile one Nov and had more then he knew what to do with by next Sept. The horses were gorging themselves on them. I also have a fondness for the bumpy warty ones and white too, but never had any luck with them.

Yes our weather is a bear to deal with, temps can vary wildly within a few miles. I live in the western side of the cascade foothills and the micro climates are hard to deal with. What gets me is 5 miles west of me is a farmer who grows acres of pumpkins. Another couple of farmers to the south of me grow acres and acres of them. They reseed most of their fields by plowing under the pumpkins that didn't make it to market. About the only thing I can figure is their fields get more sun or heat... alas there's nothing I can do to improve that.
 

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Admittedly I'm prolly gonna do like a 50% switch to funkins this year, Im trying to do some landscaping and house repair so I can sell this place in 2 years. Plus, I'm also the lazy guy who buys 20+ and gets rid of like 10 before they start to rot.
 

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Seed catalogs are out and its time to start ordering again!
Aaahhhhh yeeeessss......garden porn time!!

We're expecting a big snowstorm from Sunday to Tuesda so I'll have plenty of time to peruse them all.
 

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Glad to see the thread started. I am slowly starting to order supplies for this year's patch. While I will start my plants indoors again, I am going to start a month later than last year. I will practice germinating in March to make sure that I still have the touch. I personally use the heated baggie method. My goal last year was to get my plants out by March 15th, but this year my goal is to have them out April 28th.

While an early start sounds good in theory you still have to have sunlight to grow. Pumpkin plants do not thrive under cloudy conditions. Plus, as my pumpkin vines started to get about 6ft long, my indoor enclosure for three plants also got out of hand. Especially when you consider that I built an indoor enclosure that I could walk around in and kept it heated at 70 degrees. This year I am going try to throttle back on the extra work, but keep the extra details.

So is the plan......

Pic is not of me but a grower in Utah. But I will be growing a seed from his 849lb pumpkin.

744050
 

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I'm in the PNW, I looked it up growing zone 8b I have mostly shade but do my best to plant where I get the most sun.
Some of the largest pumpkins ever grown in the US were grown in the states of Oregon and Washington. The 6th largest pumpkin ever grown in the world at 2,469 lbs. was grown in Pleasant Hill, Oregon in 2018 and the 9th largest pumpkin ever grown at 2,363 lbs. was grown in Sumner, Washington in 2017.

Congratulations on getting a lot flowers which indicates, in my opinion pretty solid soil. If you get that far along this year, I am sure a lot of old timers in growing years, not age...lol, will help you out with getting them pollinated.

Best of luck.
 

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Suplies are starting to roll in. I picked up a couple bags of seed starting soil. Last year was the first year that I used seed starting soil. It is certainly worth it. My old standby was Home Depot top soil. It may be me but "top soil" seems to have almost no dirt in it anymore. It is basically just shredded bark. Seed starting soil is real fluffy dirt and it holds water really well.

Once again, I start way too early. Most people can wait to put seeds in the ground until late May. It all just depends on your last frost date. I am just trying to maximize my growing days. It has been my experience that it takes about six weeks or so after germination to get flowers that are ready to produce. And then about 75-90 days to get a pumpkin through maturity. Though there are "racer" variety of pumpkins that can mature in 30-45 days.

My perfect pollination date would be the first week to ten days of June. Then I would be at 90-110 days of pumpkin growing which is good. That would give me to a solidly mature pumpkin in September and my pumpkin contest is around the 20th of September.

This time of year flies by fast. It will be April in a blink of an eye.
 

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Happy Valentine's Day, everyone. :love:

My two gallon pots came in this weekend via Amazon. Kind of shot myself in the foot with Amazon. I bought them and then was like "Home Depot sells pots." The Home depot pots were less expensive but were more of the one and done type. I was pleasantly surprised that the Amazon pots are more like sturdy indoor plastic pots. I will probably test germinate 8 seeds and put four in pots. I will grow the four test plants indoors for three weeks and check to make sure that the roots are not bound and that my lighting set-up is good enough for three weeks of growth.

That will leave 8 fresh pots for the garden plants. Ever since the year I had one plant suffer from bacterial leaf spotting, I try to be extra cautious. I will wash all 12 pots thoroughly and re-use next year. As soon as I get a decent weekend, I will probably work on the patch outer wind break/fencing.


744127
 

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I ordered a gallon of my favorite new supplement from last year: Neptune's Harvest. I had the best leaves last year. I went with the fish and seawood blend. A lot of people use one or the other. I have no idea which is best so I went with the combo mix.

I also added a truckload of manure compost last year which was probably the biggest help. I hope to get another delivery this year, but the owner is a retired gentleman and I am nervous that he is going to call it quits. There are one or two other sources that are farther away, but the delivery charge gets to be like $200-$300 which is outside my hobby budget. My garden is almost 1800 sq ft so it is not like I can purchase compost by the bag.

Getting the itch. We have one or two sunny days a week although the temps are still cold. Highs between 40-55 degrees and lows between 25-35 degrees.

I promise you, May is closer than you think.

744221
 

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Ahhh, waaaaaaaay too early for me to start, but I can start deciding what I want to grow, this year. I always do my minis, especially my JBLs (Jack Be Littles) or the harvest mix that has the three colors of minis and you never know what you will end up with, which is what I did last year. You guys all know I love to grow upwards on trellises and such, and in large planters, sometimes, too.

I'm really not sure I'll be able to do much, this year, for pumpkins or other veggies, due to the crazy infestation of both squash bugs and, now, cucumber beetles. I have always dealt with the squash bugs in this yard, but they get worse each year...and the insane infestation of my entire yard of cucumber beetles was brand new, last year. Having the SVBs starting to pop up up here in the northern states isn't helping, either. I may have to try to hold off planting outdoors for as long as I can to try to get any burrowed bugs to pop up and leave my garden, first. (The best thing to do would be to completely grow nothing, this year, to starve the insects out of my yard...but I know I won't be able to resist growing, lol. Sigh.)

We will see when the time gets closer. Right now, we have been in a constant sea of white...it's snowing, once again, right now, actually. Spring Fever...major...as usual.
 

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**Oh, as I usually do this at the start of each Pumpkins Grower's Thread, each year, here are some helpful Pumpkin growing site links with great info on soil nutrients for if you need vining, leaves, flowers or fruit...pollination...all sorts of good stuff! Check them out if you are new to pumpkin growing or just need a refresher! Of course, asking questions, here, and reading the experienced growers' posts will help immensely, too! There are some great growers on this thread!!

**Here ya' go:


Pumpkin Nook : Pollination, Pollinating Pumpkins

How to Grow Pumpkins, Growing Pumpkin from Seeds. Planting and harvesting by Pumpkin Nook.

**One of the sites I normally post must have shut down, bummer, so here is a site that lists a lot of the types of pumpkins out there, their size category/names, to help you get an idea for some you may wish to try, for those who wanted to know:

Pumpkin Patch - Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Pumpkins!

**For those who would like to go back and read some of the previous year's threads, I linked some so you don't have to search for them, yourselves:

2020 pumpkin growers thread

2019 Pumpkin Growers Thread

Pumpkin Growers Thread 2018

Pumpkin Patch

2016 Pumpkin Patch

Pumpkin Patch 2015

2014 Pumpkin Patch Thread
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Oh, I've used fish emulsion for ages with good results. Sometimes from the local store, sometimes from my fish tank, which grows a surprising amount of java moss and java ferns, so I'm guessing comparable to the seaweed (freshwater plant vs saltwater I suppose)

In fact, we're probably tearing down the fish tank this year for yet more house remodeling so all the fish/poop/plants are heading into the garden.
 

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WItchy Kitty, I was looking at your page the other day to see if your were running around and I saw your album of candy treats. Unbelievable. The fingers in the jar looked great. Do not begin to worry about growing or not growing. Your baking preparation for Halloween looks like a full-time job. I am a sucker for m&m cookies, so I would not make it past your plate of chocolate m&m cookies. :)


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