If you like pumpkins for craft or cooking, one of the best things to do is start growing pumpkins in your vegetable garden. The best way to start is by buying pumpkin seeds as they are ready for planting.
It is essential to have plenty of room in your garden as you will need to space out the seeds.
Growing pumpkins is a lot of fun, but they usually require 75 to 100 days to mature. Follow these simple steps below to grow pumpkins.
1. Pumpkin Seeds
The first step to grow pumpkins is to select the seeds. There are two ways to do it:
- Remove the seeds from the inside of a pumpkin, or
- Buy pumpkin seeds online
We recommend the second option to avoid preparing the seeds before you plant them. There are different types of pumpkin seeds in Malaysia, so make sure to choose the right one for your needs.
2. Choose The Location
Pumpkins must have enough room to grow. Choose a location with full sunlight to light shade. Remember pumpkins don’t like soggy soil, so make sure the soil can drain.
Pumpkin seeds will grow better if the pH of the soil is between 6 and 6.8. Keep the area free of pests, insects, and weeds.
Even though pumpkins need space to grow, you can also grow them in pots. The key is to get big containers, at least 20 to 25 gallons. Remember, the bigger the container the better. It is critical to use a container that has drainage holes.
3. How To Plant
Since Malaysia is a tropical country, you can grow pumpkins all-year-round as they love the heat. However, it is best to plant them during the dry season.
Plant the pumpkin seeds in rows leaving 1.50 meters apart. If you are growing a miniature variety, you could space them 0.90 centimeters apart.
Planting seeds in rows is also known as “pumpkin hills.” When you do it this way, the soil will warm quicker, and the seeds will germinate faster. Also, it helps with drainage and pest control.
It is critical to know that if the soil is at the right temperature, the plants should germinate in less than seven days. It is an excellent idea to thin to 2 to 3 plants per hill when the plants are 5 to 7 centimeters tall. Snip off the unwanted plants, but be careful not to disturb the roots of the remaining ones.
4. Take Care of the Pumpkin Seeds and Plants
Try to keep the planting spot free of pests, insects, and weeds; this is especially important in the early part. Once the plants are 30 centimeters tall, you can fertilise with a nitrogen-based fertiliser. When the vines are showing, change your compost to the one that is high in phosphorus.
Always water the vine in the early morning to avoid making the pumpkins extra dry. Since pumpkins need lots of water, make sure to water 2.50 centimeters per week. Water them deeply, especially during fruit set.
It is an excellent idea to keep foliage and fruit dry except on a sunny day. Avoid dampness as it makes rot and other diseases more likely.
You can also help the pumpkins stay hydrated by adding mulch around the area. Adding mulch will not only keep in moisture but will suppress weeds and discourage pests.
You can pinch off the vines ends after a few pumpkins have formed to give more space.
Pumpkins have a long growing season up to 100 days. It is a good idea to remove the leaves a few weeks before harvest. By doing this you are helping the pumpkins get more colors.
Signs of a ripe pumpkin:
- The outside is the proper colouring
- The skin is hard to the touch
- The stem is dry to the touch, and it begins to wrinkle
Use gloves to cut the stem 2.50 to 10 centimeters. Be careful not to cut too short, as it will not store as long. Finally, place the pumpkin in the sun for 10 to 14 days to harden and ripen. For more information, feel free to get in touch with us.