Pumpkins are ornamental, edible and just plain FUN! They are available in all sizes, shapes, and colors. They are mostly native to Eastern Europe, about 80% of all pumpkins grown are here in the United States and about 99 percent of those grown are used for Halloween decoration and Jack-O-Laterns. But don’t underestimate this tasty treat! Some of the varieties make truly delicious breads, pies, and cookies. Don’t take our word for it, try it yourself! Have some fun, grow pumpkins!
File the edges of the seed lightly with a nail file. This will let moisture into the seed. Most importantly, filing your seeds makes it easier for the leaves to emerge from the shell without damage. The shell of giant pumpkin seeds are very thick, and the leaves sometimes have difficulty splitting open the shell. To avoid pinched or damaged primary leaves, we recommend filing the edges of the seeds for all giant pumpkins. As a matter of fact, it will aid germination and seedling emergence for any hard shelled pumpkin seed or other seeds.
Soak the seeds in warm (not hot) water for an hour or two. Note some growers soak them for several hours.
Fill six inch peat pots with soil. Use a Seed Starter mix if you are new at growing pumpkins. Experienced growers often make their own starter mix, adding a number of other things. Also ash from the fireplace and some compost are good. Add the compost in the bottom inch or two of the pot, and make sure it is clean of insects.
Plant the seed in the pot, 1?-2? deep.
Place the seed either on its side, or with the pointed end down. Water thoroughly.
Provide bottom warmth to the seeds. Many people use a germination mat which will improve germination rates and speed the process. Once the plant has sprouted, stop the bottom heat as it can harm the roots. Again, germination mats work best. In four to six days the seedling should appear.