This week I wanted to talk about growing pumpkins being that it is that time of the year. Pumpkins are what Fall is all about with jack-o-lantern’s and pumpkin pie (yumm!). Yes, Halloween is over but we still have Thanksgiving right around the corner and pumpkins are an icon for Thanksgiving as well. If any of you like pumpkin pie like I do, there is nothing like fresh pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving made from fresh pumpkins. Pumpkin pie is my specialty so next year I plan on growing them in my garden for making pumpkin pie, bread and all kinds of goodies.
1) Pick a sunny place to plant (just like most other vegetables).
2) Pumpkins do not like the cold very well so wait until middle or end of May to plant. This should still be plenty of time to have pumpkins for Halloween.
3) Make your hole about 1-2 inches deep with 2 seeds per hole and 2-3 feet between each hole.
4) Pumpkins need their room to grow so planting them separate from other vegetables is ideal.
5) Pumkins like moist to dry soil so do not water to often. However, when you do water make sure to give them enough water to insure the water goes deep into the soil and reaches their furthest roots (Drip irrigation is ideal).
6) Pumpkins are sensitive to cold temperatures and wind so make sure to protect them from the harsh elements.
1) Most pumpkins reach maturity 50 days after their flower bloomed. A Good way to tell is if you have a rich, warm color and the vines start to die off.
2) You can expect to get 25-50 medium pumpkins per 100 foot row. So you can estimate if you have a smaller parcel. The larger the pumpkin the less will grow.
3) If a few of your pumkins are ready to harvest early you can pick them and store them in a cool place (60-70 degrees) and out of humidity. Do not stack them when storing to ensure they get enough air circulation and do not rot.
Now you know how to grow pumpkins. Hopefully you can be successful and enjoy your labor come next fall. I know I will! 🙂 For more information and helpful tips visit http://www.colostate.edu/Depts/CoopExt/4DMG/VegFruit/pumpkin2.htm or http://www.pumpkingrowingtips.com/organic.htm
I also wanted to share with you my pumpkin pie recipes. It is my favorite thing to bake.
Pumpkin Pie Recipe (makes 1 1/2 pies)
2 cup pureed pumpkin
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1 2/3 cups evaporated milk
Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.
(a little tip- poke holes in crust and bake for 5 minutes before adding the batter.)
Mix all dry ingredients together first, and then add everything else. (Use and electric mixer on low so that it is light and airy). Add to pie crust. Cover crust edges with tin foil. Try very hard not to get the mix on the crust when putting into oven or your crust will be burnt there. Cook at 425 for 20 minutes and then turn heat down to 350 for 1 hour. Times may vary. It is good to check the pies after 30 minutes. Use a toothpick and see if still liquidity. If dark spots start appearing on top take the pies out because they are over done.