Friday, 24 October 2014 00:00

How does Pumpkin grow?

See here how your Halloween pumpkin grows from seed to doorstep!

  • Latin Name:

    Cucurbita maxima, c. moschata, c.argyrosperma

  • Growth:

    How do pumpkins grow?

    USDA Zones 3 to 9 Click here to view USDA Zone map

    Pumpkins are an annual that like full sun but cannot tolerate any frost. All varieties of pumpkin grow on vines 3' tall and 15' long. Their growing season is 75 to 125 days long, so if you want to carve your own pumpkin at Halloween, make sure you plant early.

    Spring:Plant seedlings about 2 to 4 weeks before the last frost.

    Summer:- Growing season.

    Fall:Ready for harvest.

    Winter:No growth.

    Watch video: Pumpkin Time Lapse


  • Propagation:

    How are pumpkins propagated?

    Plants are grown primarily from seed in soil temperatures that range between 60 to 70 degrees F.

    Pumpkins have male and female flowers, both are a golden yellow color. Bees or other insects are necessary to spread pollen from plant to plant.

  • Harvest:

    How are pumpkins harvested?

    -When temperatures begin to drop in late summer, pumpkins begin to change color from green to a rich red-orange. As the vine withers, the pumpkin ripens.

    -When removing the pumpkin from the vine, several inches of the stem are left on the pumpkin which helps the fruit stay fresh.

    -Pumpkins need to be cured in the sun for around 10 days. Any touch of frost will cause the pumpkin to soften and rot.

    Watch Video: How to Harvest and Store pumpkins


  • Storage:

    How are pumpkins stored?

    Pumpkins store best in a cool, ventilated, dry environment.

    Do not store pumpkins near other ripening fruits, such as apples, pears, bananas. Ripening fruits release ethylene gas which shortens a pumpkin's storage life.

    Avoid piling pumpkins, the compact warmth quickens decay.

    Pumpkins that are cured and properly stored keep for 2 to 3 weeks.

  • History:

    What is the history of pumpkins?

    Pumpkins are a cultivar of squash, specifically winter squash.

    Pumpkins are native to North America and were introduced to the Pilgrims by Native Americans in the 15h century.

    The word pumpkin originated from the Greek word pepon, meaning "large melon."

  • Top Producers:

    Who are the top pumpkin producers?

    China, India, Ukraine, the United States, and Egypt.

    The top pumpkin producing U.S states include Illinois, California, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.

  • Varieties:

    What are common pumpkin varieties?

    There are small and large varieties of pumpkins. Cucurbita pepo is grown for Halloween pumpkins while Cucurbita maxima produce huge pumpkins used in growing competitions.

    Popular varieties include the Autumn Gold, Sugar Treat, Dill's Atlantic Giant, and the Jack Be Little.

    Autumn Gold pumpkins are ideal for decorating and carving, while Sugar Treats are great for cooking and baking.

  • Products:

    What are common uses for pumpkins?

    Most parts of a pumpkin are edible. The majority of pumpkin parts are edible, including the seeds, shell, flowers, and leaves.

    Pumpkins can be steamed, boiled, baked, or roasted.

    Eaten in desserts, main dishes, appetizers, smoothies, and sweets.

    Pumpkin puree is mass produced and used mainly for the traditional pumpkin pie, that makes its way onto the majority of Canadian and North American tables during the holiday season.

    Oil from the seeds is used to produce pumpkin seed oil, a great flavor enhancer used in salad dressings and for cooking.

  • Top Health Benefits:

    What are common health benefits of pumpkins?

    Pumpkins are rich in Beta-Carotene and beta- cryptoxanthin, antioxidants that help the body fight disease and decrease the risk of cancer.

    Pumpkin seeds are full of magnesium, protein, zinc, and plant compounds full of antioxidants and free radicals that boost the immune system.

More in this category: « How does Squash grow?