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Even Pumpkins

We got a fine question at Ask Gardenerd this week:

I just harvested my pumpkins. They all are a very beautiful orange
color.  However, after rolling them over, all are flat on the bottom side
that was next to the ground, and a white color is on that side.  What can I do
next year to prevent this?”

Yea for pumpkins!  It’s so satisfying to harvest them after all that time and space (they get so big and sprawl everywhere) over the summer.  Here’s a very easy thing that you can do to solve both the white color and the flat texture:

Rotate your pumpkins.  During the growing season, as the color starts to turn from green to orange, give each pumpkin a quarter turn once a week.  Most pumpkins will give way and rotate pretty easily, but just be careful not to snap off the stem from the vine.  Turning the pale side toward the sun will ensure even color and roundness.

The other thing you can do to help with roundness is to place the pumpkin on its bum (the flat bottom side opposite the stem end) very early on as it grows.    If it sits upright, it will stay round and fill out evenly on all sides.  You can still rotate any pale parts toward the sun as well. (See the pumpkin below in the background).



Thanks for writing in!

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