Happy Halloween Eve! I thought I would give a little update on my post from a couple a month ago about growing pumpkins from seed. Mainly, because it’s prime pumpkin season, but also because that pumpkin actually grew! After all of the problems that I have faced trying to grow pumpkins & squash through the years, I am thrilled that I was actually able to grow a full-sized one! I had hoped to grow a crowd of pumpkins this year, but beggars can’t be choosers. That one pumpkin is now the pride & joy of my 2020 gardening adventures! I also thought it would be fun to create a pumpkin post & let you all know about how pumpkin crazy I’ve gone this spooky season. So, let’s get this pumpkin party post popping!
First, the update on the star of the show, my very own pumpkin that I grew from seeds that I collected from pumpkins that I bought last year. Since the last post, it kept on growing bigger every day until it topped out at a little over 7 inches. I took seeds from pie pumpkins, so that’s about par for the course. I learned that when you grow pumpkins from seeds that you’ve collected you might not end up with the same variety as the mother pumpkin. I’m not sure what the exact variety of the pumpkin I grew, but it is apparent that it is a pie pumpkin.
Our weather took a cool autumn turn this month with a few frosty nights that really did a number on the pumpkin leaves. My pumpkin hadn’t ripened yet, so I didn’t want to pick it. I ended up covering as much of the plant as I could with a blanket in order to protect it from the cold nights. However, it became clear two weeks ago that the cool nighttime temps were here to stay, so I picked the pumpkin even though it showed no signs of ripening. Imagine my surprise when I clipped the stem & picked the pumpkin off of the ground only to see that there was a big orange patch on the underside! It had been ripening all along & I just didn’t realize it. I looked around online to see if there was anything I could do to keep the ripening process going & found this article which states that placing it near a sunny window would do the trick. So, that’s where my pumpkin has been living ever since. I give it a quarter turn every day & it’s slowly but surely ripening up. I still have hope that I’ll be able to make a pumpkin pie out of it for Thanksgiving!
I’m a pumpkin person through & through, so one pumpkin just isn’t enough for me. I ended up buying a whole bunch of pumpkins & gourds to celebrate the season. I always try to go for the classic jack-o-lantern pumpkins, mini pumpkins, white pumpkins & tiger pumpkins. I also always try to get one that is pimply & weird. The weirder the better. It’s just not fall without having a bunch of pumpkins to decorate the house with. I did buy two pie pumpkins in case my homegrown pumpkin doesn’t continue to ripen. I roasted them & created pumpkin puree (see how I made it last year), so I could make pumpkin goodies from them. It’s a tradition of mine to make pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, pumpkin soup & other pumpkin culinary creations from fresh pumpkins. Fresh just tastes so much better than canned.
I decided to celebrate Halloween & the major event that is my first homegrown pumpkin by making pumpkin bread with some of the pumpkin puree. Also, because I have the best autumn cakelet pan in all of creation & I like to break it out whenever I can. I am a sucker for decorative cake pans. I want all of them, all of them. They just make baking so easy & the baked goods look so pretty. I clearly enjoy cake decorating, but it’s nice to just make a simple baked good in a fancy pan that does all the decorating for you. I implore you to buy this pumpkin pan if you’re a pumpkin-crazed person like I am! Be warned though, one decorative cake pan leads to more decorative cake pans.
I hope all of you are having a great spooky season full of pumpkins, scary movies & candy! Hopefully, my pumpkin growing enthusiasm has inspired you to grow your own pumpkins next year too if you have never grown them before. Try setting aside a few seeds from your own store-bought pumpkins this year or buying the seeds directly. I already have quite a few pumpkin seeds on my wishlist. So many that I’m not sure where exactly I’m going to plant them all, but where there’s a will there’s a way. Happy gardening, everyone!