Are you thinking about growing pumpkins? Do you have a backyard for gardening and pumpkin seeds? That deep yellow to orange Cucurbita maxima or pumpkins does make not only a perfect Halloween décor item but also a good source of many healthful nutrients.
As a member of the Cucurbitaceae family, pumpkins are family members of watermelon, cucumbers, and melons.
Apart from buying pumpkin seeds online, you can also use the seeds from that pumpkin you used for decoration. In this post, we will walk you through some helpful tips to grow pumpkins from pumpkin seeds so you can make the most out of your garden.
1. The Right Time to Plant Pumpkin Seeds
The growth rate of pumpkins is higher in hot climates as compared to cold ones. Thus in Malaysia, you can grow pumpkins all year long.
Since June, July and August have the hottest days (different region might slighly different timing), planting pumpkins in these months will enable you to get the maximum benefit of your pumpkins a few months later.
2. The Right Place to Plant Pumpkin Seeds
Bear in mind that spacing out the seeds requires space in your backyard. Additionally, the planting area for pumpkins should be full of the sun to light shade. What’s more? Planting the seeds five feet apart is advisable because of large vines.
More importantly, 18°C or 65°F is the recommended temperature of the soil while the soil pH should be around 6.0 – 6.8.
To make sure the best growth of your pumpkins, plant the pumpkin seeds into the soil directly about the depth of one inch.
Key Takeaway: Check for any pests, weeds, and insects, in particular, during the early days of planting.
3. The Fertilization of the Pumpkin Plant
Regular fertilizing your plant with a nitrogen-based fertilizer works best once your plants have reached the height of one foot.
When you see the vine, switch to a phosphorus-rich fertilizer. Moreover, the right time of pinching off the vine’s fuzzy ends starts just when you’re ready for stunting the growth of the vine.
Prune the vine to ensure blooming growth of the plant.
4. Watering the Pumpkin Plant
When it comes to watering the pumpkins, it is very important to diligently water the plants to reduce their susceptibility to disease.
More importantly, water the plants in the early morning, in particular, during that hot or sunny days to save them from dehydration or dryness.
Typically, pumpkins grow fully within 75 to 100 days. Just when you see a properly coloured exterior and a hard-to-touch skin, your pumpkins might have ripened! Another indication of a matured pumpkin plant is its stem is dry and shrivel upon touching.
Moreover, remember to wear a glove when cutting. Cut the pumpkin stem one to four inches when the plant is fully matured. Remember that you will not be able to store the plant for long if you cut the stem too short.
Now that you’ve cut the stem, place the pumpkin under the sun for about two weeks to allow proper hardening and ripening.
Bonus tip: To get more colourful pumpkin plants, remove any leaves that shade the plants.
Looking For More Useful Tips?
We are pleased to have come up with some more useful pumpkin planting tips for you:
- Before transplantation, add on aged compost to planting beds.
- Do not plant pumpkins if melons or cucumbers have ripened lately for best yield.
- Bacterial wilt, fusarium wilt, powdery mildew, cucumber mosaic, and downy mildew are some common diseases.
- Aphids, flea beetles, cucumber beetles, squash vine borers, squash bugs, snails, and slugs are some common pest enemies.
- A soil temperature lower than 18°C will inhibit the germination of pumpkin seeds.
- Avoid growing pumpkins in containers as they need significant room for spreading and growth.
In a Nutshell
We wish you found these tips helpful for growing pumpkin plants from pumpkin seeds in your backyard. Growing those jack-o’-lanterns on your own can be a lot of fun. All they require is care, love, and attention for the best growth and yield.