From Planting to Eating and Everything In Between
The pumpkin is an iconic symbol for the Fall season. Pumpkins can be used for things such as decorations and food. Here, you can get an idea of how a pumpkin should be planted and what you can do with the pumpkin once it grows.
Pumpkins require a long growing season (75-100 days) without any frost or cold weather. Make sure to plant your pumpkin seeds directly into the ground and in a spot that gets plenty of sunlight. Additionally, you should plant each pumpkin at least 4 to 5 feet apart from each other as they grow extensive vines. Since pumpkins are very sensitive to the cold, planting them in soil of at least 70 degrees or warmer would give them a better chance at growing properly. Here are more examples on how to grow a pumpkin.
Caring for the Pumpkin
There are a few things you should know when caring for a pumpkin in the making. Because pumpkins are very thirsty, make sure they get plenty of water. Other than watering them frequently, adding mulch around the base of the plant is a great way to care for your pumpkin. Mulch helps retain any moisture and water as well as serving as a barrier for the weeds. Using covers early on in the season will protect them against insects, cold weather, and frost. Even though the covers may only protect the pumpkin from the cold by warming them up a few degrees, the warmer it is, the better your pumpkin will grow.
Let this be the year that you carve a pumpkin you grew in your own yard. First, you will need to find a pumpkin that you like best. Second of all, you should gather all of the necessary tools such as a pen to draw out your design and some sort of carving tool. Have a template ready to trace or come up with a design in your head. As pumpkin carving can leave a big mess, make sure to put something down to protect your floors or tables. Start by cutting a hole at the top or bottom of your pumpkin and scoop out all of the insides. After the inside of the pumpkin is all cleaned out you may begin to carve out your design. Throughout the entire process of carving your pumpkin, do not forget to have fun! Need some inspiration? Click here to get some ideas.
What to Do with Your Pumpkin
Moving forward to having the actual pumpkin now and deciding what to do with it. Here are a couple of ideas for you:
- Carve them for Halloween – as previously mentioned, you can carve a face or your favorite design onto your pumpkin.
- Use them as yard decorations – you can paint or glue on items to decorate the pumpkin and use them on your yard or stairs for as a nice Fall decoration
- Skin cream – mixing the pumpkin until it becomes a puree and combining coconut milk creates a product that is good for your skin
- Use the pumpkin seeds – bake them with your choice of spices to accompany things like nuts or to eat on their own
- Photo props – need to send out Thanksgiving cards? Use a pumpkin in the picture to give it that fall feel.
Believe it or not, there are plenty of dishes you can make from a pumpkin. If you are a hummus fan, you can make it by using a pumpkin! Fries, anyone? Cut your pumpkin into small slices to create Parmesan pumpkin fries. Lets not forget about the iconic pumpkin pie and pumpkin spice lattes. Need more ideas on what food to cook with your pumpkin? Check this out for more pumpkin inspired dishes to pass around at your dinner table.
Did You Know:
- It wasn’t until the 17th century when they were referred to as pumpkins, they were originally called “pompions”
- Over one and half billion pounds of pumpkin are produced in the US alone
- 95% of the worlds pumpkins grow in Morton, IL
- Germany grew the worlds heaviest pumpkin that weighed over a ton
- A pumpkin contains over 500 seeds
- Every part of a pumpkin is edible: even the stem
What will you do with your pumpkin this year?