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In this step-by-step guide, I will show you exactly how to grow Seminole Pumpkin from scratch. If you are someone who is looking forward to growing Seminole Pumpkin but have no idea where to get started, how to harvest, or how to take care of the plant, then this article is written exactly for you.
Table of Contents
About Seminole Pumpkin
Seminole pumpkin is a cultivar of Cucurbita moschata and the other known variety of this cultivar is butternut squash and calabaza.
Although the pumpkin grows in a variety of shapes and colors, mostly it’s rounded and dull orange in color.
Seminole Pumpkins are a crucial part of Florida’s history as they were planted by The Seminoles, Calusa, Miccosukee, and Creek people on the base of trees which helped their vines to climb up and grow on the tree ad hang from the branches.
Seminole Pumpkin is one of the few vegetables that can withstand extreme heat and humidity in Florida.
When to Plant Seminole Pumpkin?
Planting Seminole Pumpkin at the right season is crucial to keep the plant healthy. You can grow pumpkins at any time of the year except the winters.
However, spring and summer is the best season to grow Pumpkins. Planting the Seminole pumpkin in the wrong season leads to diseases and problems of pests which results in poor health of the plant.
The perfect time to grow Seminole Pumpkin is February to April in North Florida and Central Florida and August to March in South Florida.
Now, that we have learned what is the perfect time to plant Seminole pumpkins, it’s time to learn how to plant them.
How to Plant Seminole Pumpkin seedes?
Seminole Pumpkin seeds must be planted in a large open area so the vines can spread on the ground and grow easily. If you are low on space, then you can plant it around the tree or fence, so that the vines can climb up and grow upwards.
The seeds must be planted half to 1 inch deep and 5 to 6 feet apart from each hill. To fasten up the growth and provide nutrients, a small amount of fertilizers is needed at the time of planting.
Then, you have to apply fertilizers after six weeks of planting the seed.
Caution: I have done the mistake of applying more amount of fertilizers which resulted in huge numbers of leaves with very little to no fruit. So, it’s advised not to over-apply the fertilizers to the plants.
When to harvest Seminole Pumpkin?
Seminole Pumpkin seeds are ready to harvest within 95 days of planting the seeds. With proper care against pests and diseases along with the right amount of fertilizers, the Seminole pumpkin will grow healthy fruits and weighs as much as 11 to 12 pounds when it’s mature.
You can identify a ripe or matured Seminole pumpkin when the color of the pumpkin turns to sandy orange. Then you can harvest the pumpkin and let the vine produce more fruits until the first frost of the year.
Once you harvest the pumpkins, make sure to place them in a cool and dry place to keep them fresh.
What do Seminole Pumpkins taste like?
Seminole Pumpkins are tough from the outside, but inside the tough rind is a delicious deep-orange flesh that is sweet. The Seminole pumpkins are sweet in taste just like butternut squash.
You can eat them boiled, steamed, or sun-baked as well as fried. It tastes better as a pie and bread.
Can you Grow Seminole Pumpkin in a Container?
Seminole Pumpkin can easily grow in at least a 5-gallon large container which has a good drainage system. However, you have to place the container in an open space letting the vines spread out and grow freely.
How to keep your Seminole Pumpkin safe and healthy?
Seminole Pumpkins are easy to grow and they don’t need much care like other squish plants, however, your Seminole pumpings might get affected by pets and different diseases and in this section, we will discuss how to identify the issues with your plants, fix them and keep the Pumpkin safe.
One of the common problems you will encounter while growing Seminole Pumpkin or any other plants is pests that destroy the leaves and other parts of the plants. The most common pests attracted to Seminole Pumpkins are Caterpillars and Vine borer.
Let’s learn how these pests affect the plants and how to prevent or treat them:
- Caterpillars: Mostly Caterpillars stay hidden under the leaves wrapped with webbing curl and they love to eat the leaves of young plants which results in the death of the plants at their initial growth phase. So, It’s important to check if your Seminole Pumpkin plants are affected by Caterpillars or not. Make sure to check the leaves of the plant and see if there are any holes and hidden caterpillars. There are two ways to get rid of caterpillars which include manually picking the caterpillars and destroying them and the other way is using pesticides.
- Vine Borer: Unlike Caterpillars, the Vine Borer lays on the soil until they hatch from its cocoon. Then they lay eggs on the stem of the plants and then make a hole into the stem and start eating the plants from inside. So, once the vine borer gets into the stem, there is no way to save the plants. One way to prevent vine borers from infesting the stem is using aluminum foil to wrap the stem so it has less chance to make a way into the plant.
Gummy Stem Blight or Black Rot
Gummy Stem Blight commonly known as Black rot is a fungal disease that spreads around the plants. Once a plant caught this fungal infection, it’s wise to plug out the plant to avoid spreading it to other plants.
To identify if your plants are affected by Gummy Stem you can check the following symptoms:
- The rotting of the fruits
- Small black spots on the vines.
- All the leaves start turning yellow.
- Brown spots on the leaves.
So, what are the root causes of Black Rot infection on Seminole Pumpkin?
The main cause of black rot is overwatering the plants. If you are directly watering the plants from top to bottom of the plant, then it makes the leaves of the plants dry which causes the infection to start.
So, it’s wise to water only the root of the plant. Moreover, you can avoid watering the plants at night as the water takes a lot of time for the water to dry in the nighttime compared to in the daytime.