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Garden - Growing
Garden - Growing

I start my pumpkin and squash plants indoors from seed around the first of May (in Washington area), about two weeks before I transplant them into the garden. Once the seedlings have a couple of true leaves, I start feeding them with fish fertilizer that has been diluted to half-strength.

Hereís what you can do to have a great crop:

In the garden, prepare their bed by adding plenty of organic amendments such as shredded leaves, compost and/or composted steer manure. The most important ingredient of all is bone meal, which contains a higher percentage of phosphorus than it does nitrogen or potassium. Plants that bloom and set fruit need extra phosphorus so I always work some into the soil. -Susan

pumpkin we're here in Germany what I've done is early in the spring I've prepped the ground that's your what we're very first thing is consider the ground what you're doing is growing good ground not good plants because good ground will grow the plant so feed the ground so early in the spring I have brought in tons of rabbit droppings doing compost so this is compost that I've made all winter long by adding it to the chicken yard the scratchcard in the chickens made a really good compost

as soon as the snow is gone so here in Germany that would be late February early March is what I would do this you can also do it in the fall before you can lay all of your your good fertile eggs and your accomplice on top and you can even do something called a green fertilizer which means that you grow a little bit of a green cover and then in the spring you're going to work that in

Buc we I believe it's really really good clover is also a good option so that's something that you can you can grow it in the fall and then it will die down and then the spring turn that over to and then add your compost or your fertilizer on top as much as you can now in the fertilizing Department something like llama droppings horse manure possibly cow manure if that's all you can get chicken manure if it's a year or two old and of course we rabbit droppings which you can put directly into the pot no problem or into the hole no problem so cover that in try to do as much as possible I like to you about five or six inches all the way across so that's the base then I'm going to let that sit and only that's it for a long time so all the way until well kind of the less frost I do plant before the last frost and I tend to cover things a little bit and just hope that they don't die and I put out about half of the plants before the last frost and the other half after them so I put them out just in case we might not have a frost and they might survive so when you put your plants into the ground you've done all this compost and all this fertilizer you still want to fertilize more okay so once you're ready to put your plant your seedling that you've grown inside once you're ready to put that into the ground you want to make your nice big hole make sure the hole is pretty big and you're going to take all that dirt out now some of it is good but some of the stuff on the bottom might not be so perfect and if you're planting this the first time you want to make sure that you really do take it out if you haven't gone to the trouble of adding all the fertilizer and compost the ground on top so take everything out make a nice big hole and in the bottom put in more compost more fertilizer things like bone meal fish meal or a liquid version of fish meal kelp meal are all really good to put in the bottom this will be your fertilizer part then additionally you want magnesium sulfate and calcium so the magnesium sulfate are going to come from Epsom salt and the calcium literally comes from calcium go to the gardening center and dish ask for calcium for plants and some Epsom salt and throw them into that is going to be like your your Miracle Grow kind of idea because of course these are all organic for the most part I mean those are technically chemicals so they're not actually organic but they're organic in the fact that no pet chemicals of an act to them they're they're naturally found in the world this is what is going to make your plant just go crazy explode grow so beautiful and so strong the magnesium is going to give you a really strong cell structure on your actual plant so your plant won't fall down be weak it'll it'll have a good solid foundation when it grows and the calcium is going to keep it the right color it's going to keep it really strong if you find that your plants are turning yellow add some calcium that will help if it's just as simple as they're not in the future it's on the ground and the leaves are kind of looking and getting I'm not wilting but just getting a little yellow add some calcium I actually have an example of a small plant that needs calcium see if I missed the bottom and you want to mix it up really good okay then take your plant preferably a plant that's already been growing inside but you can also use it as a seed in which case plant the plant in the ground cover it up or put new compost and more rabbits or along whatever droppings in there and then stick your seed on top.

Now we want to continue growing our plant and during the course of its life we want to fertilize every two to three weeks for maximum growth these are really big feeders something like a pumpkin or a zucchini is a really big feeder now there's two options you can either mix your fertilizer into an gallon of water and in that case you want about half a cup or so for a go to a gallon of water and stir it up really well and then you can water it it pretty simple the other option is you can use something called side dressing which means you have your plant in the ground and you draw a ring of fertilizer around the plant and then you just allow the rain to wash it into the ground.
Vertical grow video

Most pumpkins or winter squash need lots of room to grow. Not necessarily where the roots are located, but enough room to allow the plant to send out runners on which the pumpkin grows. The great thing about pumpkins is that the vines will grow vertically as they have tendrils that grip on to objects really tightly. You donít need to train them upwards, they just do it all by themselves. However to promote lateral growth on which the female flowers of the pumpkin develops, you need to pinch off the growing tip of the runner after it reaches about five metres long. This tip really does help to increase the plantís output.
Space

Itís Hard to Overfertilize Pumpkins:
Sometimes I plant my pumpkins (including pepitas) in beds that are completely covered in half-rotten manure. The manure sheet composts right in the garden. I add some dirt where the pumpkin hills are (or dig some up from below the manure) so the seedlings have a spot to get established. (They wonít grow directly in the manure if it is too fresh.) The bed gets covered with heavy duty landscape fabric, and the vines sprawl all over. The composting manure adds gentle heat to the bed and fertilizes the plants all season long.

At the end of the season, I fold up the landscape fabric for reuse, and the bed is filled with rich, dark compost. The next season I follow the squash with plants that like plenty of nitrogen, like corn and cabbage. (Do not follow with root vegetables. Carrots get hairy with too much nitrogen, and potatoes are more prone to scab. Visit the Common Sense Gardening page for a full listing of gardening posts on the site.)

Incomplete pollination often happens at the beginning of the season, and results in misshapen fruits that are withered at the flower end. Just discard these damaged fruits before they begin to rot. You can encourage bees to your garden by growing Phacelia or Buckwheat for improved pollination.
Open-Pollination

Farmer Cranshaw grows hundreds of heirloom pumpkins open-pollinated.
Several landraces are grown open-pollinated. Results are many unique squash with a blend of characteristics from what we consider species(maxima, moschata, etc): stem and peduncle shape, fruit color size and shapes etc. The farmer then chooses which ones have the characteristic their looking for and replants the seed from those squash.
Heirlooms appear to be the result of this selective breeding practice over the course of decades or centuries.

Companions: corn, lettuce, melons, peas, and radish. Avoid planting squash near Brassicas or potatoes. Borage is said to improve the growth and flavour of squash. Marigolds and nasturtium repel numerous squash pest insects.

Companions to Avoid
Squash are recommended to not be planted next to potatoes and brassicas.

Try trap cropping; itís a simple method of distracting insect pests from the vulnerable vegetables in the garden. There are a few species of plants that are especially liked by insect pests. You can plant a perimeter of these highly desirable plants in the garden to sacrifice to the insects and keep them away from your more prized vegetables. You can pull these insect-covered plants and destroy pests.

The Blue Hubbard squash and Red Kuri squash are a favorite trap crops to keep other squash and squash family members safe from squash pests. This is an important method for organic gardeners to avoid the need to spray their crops.

More on trap crops: Amaranth is an amazingly versatile plant. You can eat the tasty leaves, use the seeds for flour and its seeds also make a fabulous hot breakfast cereal similar to cream of wheat. The wild birds also love it. And so do the cucumber beetles. Plant a wall of beautiful amaranth at the edge of your garden to lure cucumber beetles away from your cukes, squash and other cucurbits.

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