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Pumpkins are one of the most fun types of fruits (although many think of them as vegetables) to grow. They are not that hard to care for, but they do require lots of space. If you have a corn field, then that’s a good place to start planting pumpkin seeds. Their roots can extend as long as twenty feet, which definitely cannot fit any container.
Companions for Pumpkins
Plants are just like humans in the sense that they tend to grow better in the company they like. Pumpkins, for example, do not grow well when placed next to potatoes. So if you do not want to make a mistake, it is better to look for an isolated spot to plant your pumpkin seeds.
What You Can Get from Pumpkins
In some days, you may feel frustrated with how things are looking with your pumpkins. When these days occur, comfort yourself with the knowledge that come harvest time, you will have one of the most beautiful and largest pumpkins in the area. You will also get to benefit from a healthy diet since pumpkins are considered to be an excellent source for essential vitamins and minerals like magnesium, potassium, iron, dietary fibre, and vitamins A, B6, and C.
When and Where to Grow Pumpkins
Pumpkins will not grow in cool garden zones. They will only suffer extensive damage or die even when exposed to frost. All in all, any kind of warm climate would do. If, however, you plant them at the wrong time
of the year, low temperatures - even if there is no snow or frost - can make your production yield as well as the size of your pumpkins quite smaller than they should be.
When growing your pumpkins outdoors, make sure that it receives lots of sunlight in their area.
Preparing Soil for Growing Pumpkins
Soil preparation should be done weeks in advance. Dig out a sufficiently large hole and make sure that you work on an excellent drainage system for your pumpkins. Make soil healthy by adding lots of fresh organic fertilizer like compost and rotted manure. If you can spare some money on a complete fertilizer, that would be great, too.
Make sure to use your pH meter to check the acidity level. The pH level of your soil should be within the range of 5.5 to 7.5.
For those located in gardening zones with short growing periods, make sure that you plant your pumpkin seeds at least four to five weeks before the growing season begins. For now, it is best to grow them indoors in containers. Seeds much be placed one inch below your seed starting mix.
You can, however, also plant them outdoor but you must make sure to place a good amount of seeds under mounds of soil. Make sure to spread the seeds in different parts of the mound. There must at least half a foot of space separating each seed to ensure there is room for pumpkin vines to grow.
Once leaves start sprouting out from your mound, it is time to thin growth to just two or three plants at the most. When cutting off parts of the plant, make sure that you do not end up accidentally damaging any part of its roots.
Keep in mind that pumpkins - unlike most plants - do not like getting overly wet. An excellent irrigation system in your lot would be sufficient for watering pumpkins. But if you have to do this manually, make sure that you only perform drip watering and that you do not accidentally drown your pumpkins’ vines and leaves with water.
Fertilizing Pumpkin Soil
Pumpkins like to eat a lot (hence their size), but it is best not to feed them excessively as this will only encourage them to grow lots of leaves but not so much fruit. Add another amount of diluted fertilizer to the soil when your plant bears its first fruit. If there are too much leaves, which means your soil is brimming with organic content and fertilizer, pinch off a few leaves from your plants. This will help redirect your plant’s efforts to bearing fruits.