A Pumpkin We-Will-Grow

Pumpkin seedling tucked into the straw

Pumpkin seedling staying warm in the straw

That was easy!

The pumpkins are in. They’re lush, plentiful and thriving. In case you’re wondering about my mad gardening skills, you can sum them up in one word: compost.

I didn’t add compost to make them grow; instead they grew in the compost. I’m new to composting, and like any convert, I can’t say enough about the process (fun) and the end results (see photos, below).

When my nifty, thrifty, spinning composter reached capacity, I searched for alternatives. I re-purposed an old Rubbermaid bin, once used for children’s toys. I tossed in the straw left over from our Halloween party, then dry leaves, grass clippings and kitchen waste. I popped on the lid, drilled holes in the bottom for air circulation and drainage, and called it a day. Turning the compost was the biggest challenge. It was hard to get leverage in a narrow, small bin but I managed. About a month ago, I removed the lid and saw this: tiny pumpkin sprouts.  Awe-some!!!

Pumpkin Seedling

Pumpkin Seedling

Figuring I would transplant the seedlings when the weather warmed up, I simply returned the lid. I left it open just a crack for more light.

Then this happened:

pumpkin plants in compost

Rich compost = happy pumpkins!

pumpkin transplants from compost

Out of the compost and into the planting bed

transplanted pumpkins

Success! Pumpkins thrive in raised bed

Now all I have to do is figure out what to do with all those pumpkin seeds I saved from last year!  Any takers?

Have you found any surprises in your garden this year?

True Leaves: Seedlings Ready to Go

Pushing Up Seed Casings

I learned the expression “true leaves” on a gardening forum called I Dig My Garden. True leaves are the second pair of leaves on an emerging plant indicating all systems are go for transplanting outdoors.  I like that expression, and find it far more interesting than my heretofore “second set of leaves” terminology.

Our Burpee Growing System delivered in spades.  We have over 72 pumpkin seedlings ready to go.  I prepped the garden beds a few weeks ago anticipating this day.  The stars have aligned, which is to say dry, warm inviting conditions to launch our pumpkin crop.  Here we go!

“The love of gardening is a seed that once sown never dies.”
–  Gertrude Jekyll
☼☼☼

April 11th: Planted seeds indoors in a Burpee Seed Starting System.

April 18th: Will you look at these adorable sprouts?  What personality!

April 29th:  True Leaves!  So excited…

Kitchen Counter Pumpkin Crops