Tuesday, October 25, 2016


'Tis the season for these hearty fruits.


Pumpkins are native to the Americas. Recognizable seeds date back to 7000BC.  Early North American settlers relied on the pumpkin for nutrition. Their "pie", however was not made with nicely fluted pastry crust. They cut off the top, scooped out the seeds and put in cream, spices, eggs and honey, replaced the top and buried it in coals to roast. In a few hours the top could be taken off and the filling scooped out along with the softened flesh. Using the pumpkin as a cooking vessel was very practical.


The word pumpkin comes from the English Pumpion which came from the French word Pompon, which came from the ancient Greek, Pepon which was also a word for a melon.

Name usage differs throughout the world. In Australia, New Zealand and parts of Asia any squash is called a pumpkin. In Canada , any round, orange squash used for pies or jack-o-lanterns is likely to be called a pumpkin. But the term “pumpkin” really has no botanical meaning, as they are actually all squash.


The name of the Genus is Cucurbita and the pumpkin is considered a fruit. It is the same family as gourds, squashes ( winter and summer), melons and cucumbers. 

In a 100-gram amount, raw pumpkin provides 26 Calories and is an excellent source (20% or more the Daily Value, DV) of provitamin A beta-carotene and vitamin A (53% DV) (table). Vitamin C is present in moderate content (11% DV), but no other nutrients are in significant amounts (less than 10% DV, table). Pumpkin is 92% water, 6.5% carbohydrate, 0.1% fat and 1% protein.

The plant has both the male and female flowers on it.


female with ovary at the base of the flower
Pumpkin fertilization can be helped along by the gardener-click here for a handy "how to"

Optimum soil temperature for planting 25-30C. More growing info at Westcoast Seeds


A few examples of the many varieties available

baby boo ( image Territorial seeds)
jarrahdale (image-Harris seeds)

cinderella (image territorial seeds)
Lil' Pump-Ke-Mon (image-territorial seeds))

fairytale via pinterest
one too many (harris seeds)

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