The Q&A Archives: Growing Pumpkins

Question: I currently have a pumpkin plant growing, I now have 4 great pumpkins that are growing. Can you provide some tips on helping me grow larger pumpkins, should I move the pumpkin upright, should I cut some of the vine for stronger growth? fertilize more?
Stinney-Castle Rock, CO

Answer: To redirect the plant's energy into making larger pumpkins, pinch out the growing tip of each vine. This will stop it from elongating and developing more flowers and more fruit, thereby concentrating its energy into enlarging the fruit already growing. You can leave the pumpkins laying on their sides - standing them upright won't make a difference in their growth other than to make all sides equal rather than flat on the bottom side. If you can set them upright without stressing the vine, do so and be sure to set them on a few inches of straw or other fast draining cushion so the bottoms won't become too flat. Water as usual but add a half-strength dilution of water soluable fertilizer such as Miracle Gro to each plant every 2-3 weeks. I just mix it up in a gallon jug and pour it around the base of each of my pumpkin plants. Best wishes with your pumpkins!

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