The Q&A Archives: Pumpkins, Out Or Up?

Question: Do smaller pie pumpkins such as the New England Pie variety (6-9lb) prefer to sprawl about on the ground or should I train them to climb up a support structure? If they would prefer to climb how high should the support structure be?

Answer: I don't think the vines really care one way or another. The problem is in supporting the weight of the vines combined with the weight of the pumpkins. Small pumpkins can be held in slings attached to the trellis (old pantyhose works well for this) but the overall weight can be considerable for a trellis structure (especially in windy conditions) so make sure it is a strong one if that's what you decide to try. Depending on the dimensions of the materials you use the specific height is not all that important; be sure however that you allow ample square footage for them to spread along your combined height and width or run.

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