Growing a pumpkin is enough even for a beginner gardener. Although this plant is very inexperienced, some rules for planting, care, cleaning, storage are still necessary. The stem of the pumpkin is creeping, branched, but there are also shrub forms. The length of the main, and sometimes even lateral shoots can reach 10 meters. The root system is very powerful. Maximum size on the bog (non-irrigated land) it reaches by the time of flowering plants, with irrigation becomes more powerful, increases before the ripening of fruits. The thickness of the main root reaches 3 cm, depth - 2 meters. Under the thick skin of this fruit, juicy pulp, and in it - carotinoids. This pumpkin contains 5 times more useful nutrients than carrots. Useful properties of pumpkin allow us to maintain our body in a healthy state.
- Biological characteristics of a pumpkin
- Useful properties of pumpkin
- Pumpkin Cultivation Features
- Planting pumpkin seeds
- Pumpkin and watering care
- Fertilizers for pumpkin
- Pumpkin cleaning and storage
Of the known botanical species of pumpkins (21 of them), only three are widely grown: large-fruited (maxima), muscat (moschata), hard-root (rhero).
Large-fruited fruit weighs 4-8 kg, although the largest ones reach 60 kg (hence the name of the species).
Pumpkin Muscat is later compared to the large-fruited and hard-root. Fruits large, less often small, elongated-cylindrical, oval or oblate, color of the fruit greenish, full ripening pink-brown, with a dark orange or brown tinge.
A characteristic feature of the solid-grained pumpkin is the woody bark of the fruit. Premature lignification of the fruit crust until the end of their growth does not allow them to reach large sizes..
Biological characteristics of a pumpkin
The leaves of the pumpkin are petiolate, large, kidney-shaped, round-pentagonal, heart-shaped, whole-cut or sharply dissected. The flowers are large, usually dioecious, yellow or orange in color. Are located singly in the axils of the leaves. Under favorable conditions of growth, development, flowering of flowers, both female and male, occurs simultaneously.
The period from shoots to flowering of medium-ripening varieties is 45-55 days, late ripening - 60-65 days.
Pollination, tying fruit is normal at a temperature of 20 ° C and a relative humidity of 60-70%.
The edible part (fruit) is a false berry. The surface, shape, color of the fruit is as diverse as that of watermelon and melon. Pumpkin fruits contain 5-27% of dry matter, up to 10-12% of sugar, 1-2% of fiber, -1% of pectin substances, -26 mg / 100 g, and in some varieties up to 38 mg / 100 g of carotene, many minerals, vitamins.
Seeds contain 22-58% fat, 20-25% protein, various resins, glucosides. Pumpkin oil is no worse than olive oil. Its quality is highly appreciated in medicine, cooking. It does not contain, as a cream, substances harmful to humans.↑ back to content ↑
Useful properties of pumpkin
Regular consumption of pumpkin contributes to the prevention of diseases of the cardiovascular system, kidneys, liver, atherosclerosis, anemia, oncology, diabetes, hypertension. Carotene, contained in the flesh of the fetus, improves the metabolism, contributing to the growth of the body, increasing the body's resistance to infections. The beta-carotene contained in the fruits has anticarcinogenic properties. The dose of beta-carotene consumption for prophylactic purposes is 20 mg per day.
The biological importance of pectins is manifested in their ability to bind radioactive particles, heavy metals and remove them from the body. Cellulose favorably affects the work of the intestines, removes cholesterol from the body.
Pineapple seeds also have medicinal properties. The useful properties of which are the presence in the pumpkin oil of such important acids as palmetinic, steroinic, oleic, linoleic. The content of tocopherols (vitamin E) per 100 g of oil is about 150 mg.
With atherosclerosis, liver, kidney, gallbladder diseases, gout is recommended to drink 1/3 cup of fresh juice 2-3 times a day. Decoction of pumpkin stems is a good diuretic..
Pumpkin Cultivation Features
This vegetable, being a native of the warm countries of Central and South America, is demanding for heat, especially its nutmeg look.↑ back to content ↑
Planting pumpkin seeds
Sowing in the Kuban is carried out at the beginning of the third decade of April, in the central and northern - in early May. Seeds are soaked before sowing for 18-20 hours in, 5% solutions (, g per 1 liter of water) of potassium permanganate or zinc sulphate, as well as plant growth regulators recommended for this purpose. Then rinse with clean water, dry. Etched with Thiram (TMTD) at the rate of 4 g per 1 kg of seeds. For reference: Tiram is a contact fungicide of protective action, does not penetrate into the plant or seeds, suppresses spores of pathogenic fungi that cause root rot, fusariosis, and peronosporosis..
Sow a pumpkin with the distance between the rows, m, between the plants in the row m. With mechanized seeding, the seed sowing rate is, kg / ha, when sowing manually kg / ha.
Seeds are worth sowing when the threat of frost is reduced to a minimum. They begin to germinate at a soil temperature at a depth of 4-5 cm at about 13 ° C, sprouts appear more actively at a temperature of 18-25 ° C. In one hole, you can put two seeds, after germination, you need to leave the most powerful plant. So that the seeds are more likely to sprout, they can be germinated in advance. To do this, put them in a wet napkin for 3 days. Before the first shoots appeared (in cold nights), they should be covered with an empty plastic light bottle.↑ back to content ↑
Pumpkin and watering care
This plant is tropical, so the leaves grow much faster than the fruit itself. If the cold summer has turned out, then it is necessary to cut off all the shoots, leaving no more than three. Trying to grow large fruits, you can lose some of the taste. The most succulent, sweet are the fruits of medium size. In my experience, I can say that large pumpkins are beautiful, they can be proud of, but at best they are suitable only for making juices that will have to be sweetened, or for feeding cattle.
At the moment when the stem reaches a half-meter size, you need to trim the top of the pumpkin, this will help the development of lateral shoots. In the period of plant branching, an important technique is the 2-3 fold spilling of internodes by moist soil. This favors the formation of a large number of accessory roots, which increases the inflow of nutrients necessary for the formation of the vegetative mass, the formation of fruits.
Pumpkin, like all melons and gourds, is very light-loving. It grows well in open sunny places. The most demanding for light during shoots is 2-4 leaflets. Shaded or thickened crops during this period reduce the yield to 50%. On the backyard, a pumpkin can be grown along fences, on compost piles, but not shaded by trees..
It, thanks to a very strong root system, is considered a drought-resistant plant, however, it responds well to irrigation.
But in the watering of pumpkins have their own characteristics. First, watering must be carried out under the root. Secondly, plants especially need a sufficient amount of moisture during the formation of flower buds (phase 2-4 leaves), flowering, fruit setting. Third, water procedures should be reduced only with the appearance of flowers, as well as after the mass setting of fruits, since excess moisture adversely affects their quality, keeping quality.↑ back to content ↑
Fertilizers for pumpkin
From melons and gourds the pumpkin is more demanding for soil fertility than others. It should be cultivated on sandy loam, loamy chernozems, and also on enriched dark-colored sandy loam. Being a high-yielding crop, it takes out many elements of food from the soil.
At the same time, it is more responsive than other melons, organic fertilizers, especially manure. It is necessary to bring it in from autumn to plowing at the rate of 6-8 kg per 1 m2. When applying it before sowing in the form of humus, the dose is reduced to, kg per one well.
You can use seaweed, fish bones.
It responds very well to the introduction of ashes of herbaceous or woody plants.
With the advent of ovaries and until the harvest itself, it should be fertilized, twice a month. The plant likes to feed with a high level of potassium.↑ back to content ↑
Pumpkin cleaning and storage
For the long-term storage of the crop, it is necessary to harvest before the first frost. The plant's readiness for harvesting can be determined by its crust. It is enough just to apply a fingernail to the cuticle, if it is not squeezed, then the fruit is considered ripe.
Harvest fruits when it's dry, sunny weather. Tails do not break to the ground, but leave no less than 5-10 cm long. If possible, pumpkin fruits last for 3-4 days in the sun. Carry carefully, without damaging the bark. If you do not leave the tails on the fruit, then, most likely, they will not be stored - they will rot. The rot will begin just at the point of attachment of the stems to the fetus..
Store fruits in a dry, warm (at a temperature of + 8-12 ° C) room. In a cellar or a cellar pumpkins are not stored - they there begin to mold, rot.