Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Great Pumpkin - Episode 1

For the first time in my adult life I have a yard big enough to grow giant pumpkins. Why? Because I want to have a giant jack-o-lantern on the front porch at Halloween.

I tried growing them last year. But my efforts were half-baked and woefully uninformed. As a result, no giant, candle-lit face adorned the stoop of the tiny bungalow.

This year things will be different.

The first thing I learned in my giant pumpkin odyssey (part 2) is that the pumpkins need a lot of space to grow. So I rototilled a 25' x 6' plot in the back yard just for the pumpkins.

Two weeks ago I started giant pumpkin seeds indoors and had 19 giant pumpkin plants with their second sets of leaves baking in the dining room window. I've thinned the plants and now have only 15 plants baking in the window. It is possible I did not start them early enough. We'll see.

I have a book on order and a website bookmarked to take me through my pumpkin growing odyssey. I know I'll need to fertilize my soil and my plants nearly constantly. Am I up to the meticulous challenge? Do I want a 500 pound jack-o-lantern so badly?

I'll keep you posted here on my blog.


Jeff Cutler said...

How badly do you want a 500-lb Jack-o-Lantern? I'm worried.

BobbieC said...

This is awesome! We will be following your adventures closely. My small one wishes desperately to do the same thing but our garden is pitiful small and will not accommodate giant orange potential Halloween decorations. I am seriously considering checking out one of the community gardens just to give him the opportunity.

Clownface said...

Hey Bobbie! Will post photos if my plan works. I've done community gardening in Somerville. Be aware (a) there may be a waiting list to get a plot - seriously, and (b) still not a ton o' space for pumpkins - certainly not giant pumpkins. I'm told they can take up to 3000 sf of space!