Also known as
Squash, Cucurbita Cultivars
This plant has no fragrance
More images of Pumpkin
Pumpkins are produced from plants in the Cucurbita genus, specifically cultivars of the species Cucurbita pepo, Cucurbita maxima, Cucurbita argyrosperma, and Cucurbita moschata. These plants are all from the Cucurbitaceae family and they are all commonly known as Winter Squash. The genus Cucurbita contains some of the fastest-growing vegetable plants, which produce staple foods such as Pumpkin, Squash, Marrow and Courgette. They come in all shapes and sizes, from traditional Halloween Pumpkins and Butternut Squash to more unusual varieties such as ‘Turk’s Turban’ and ‘Crown Prince’. Fun to grow, these trailing vine species need full sun, plenty of water and rich soil. Seeds are planted in spring, male flowers will bloom first, followed by female flowers (farmers use bees to help pollinate, so they can harvest a good crop) and they are harvested from summer to autumn. Pumpkins and Squash in particular, can become very heavy, so they benefit from being grown up a sturdy support structure. As a food, they're very versatile and can be roasted, used in stews and curries or blended to make a delicious autumn soup.
Common problems with Pumpkin
Apart from slugs and snails, Cucurbita are more susceptible to pests when grown under glass.
How to harvest Pumpkin
Pick flowers to be served in a beer batter throughout Summer. Fruit is ripe when the outside is fully colored, the skin is hard, and the stem begins to shrivel and dry. Cut the pumpkin's stem using a pair of shears, leaving it a few centimeters long.
How to propagate Pumpkin
Direct sow seed in late spring or early summer, 2.5–5 cm deep. Plant seeds in rows or “pumpkin hills” which are small mounds. The soil will warm faster and the seeds will germinate quicker. This also helps with drainage and pest control.
Special features of Pumpkin
Fruits vary in sizes.
You can grow Pumpkins in growbags or containers that are at least 45 cm wide. Plant one or two per growbag, or one per container.
Colourful Pumpkins brighten up the area in autumn.
Other uses of Pumpkin
The fruit is a favourite cooked, often with cinammon.