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Post  llama momma on 7/23/2013, 6:47 pm

I've got 2 'taki gem' miniature variety of watermelon exactly like my avatar that were fertilized and growing fast.  Now I'm scared that something will eat them.  Also have 1/2 dozen large size pumpkins that are volunteers in one of the compost heaps.  Last year I tried so hard to grow pumpkins, this year they came along in the heap without trying.  Gotta love gardening and its surprises.  What a Face
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Post  walshevak on 7/23/2013, 6:57 pm

Last year I had bowling ball size watermelons and larger than softball size cantaloupe.  This year all of them are baseball sized and the cantaloupe are ripening and dropping off the vine.  About 4 bites worth and not very sweet, but it could be because I had not yet started slowing down the water.

But I have 3 proper sized pumpkins, something I've never grown before. When do you decide they are ripe and pick them? One has turned solid orange and the skin can't be pierced with my thumbnail. I seems awfully early though.

Kay

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Post  llama momma on 7/23/2013, 10:57 pm

Kaye - Your harvest question is pretty much my dilemma too.  I don't know the answer cause I have no experience.  Maybe call your local extension service.  
Last year was my first attempt. When I tried to grow Atlantic Giant pumpkins  the fruit was little plus svb problem and injected bT.  Then everything died despite extra watering in extreme heat and using shade cloth. So I didn't get to nurse it along to experience a harvest.

The pumpkin volunteers this year are unknown composted varieties from a village display plus the A. Giants that died last year.  Today there are some bowling ball size ones similar to yours and a couple are even bigger that are ripening to orange beautifully. Yet for this area they are not suppose to be ready till October.  There is one very large green one and I don't know what to make of this.  I seem to recall at some point you purposely stop watering.  The info I had is online somewhere. I'll keep looking and send you a pm if I find it.  Please let me know what you find too.
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Post  grownsunshine on 7/24/2013, 12:35 am

llama momma - please post your findings publicly. I'm a sfg newbie and I have watermelons and cantaloupe plants but no experience. I was unaware you're supposed to slow down on the watering. Thx!
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Post  llama momma on 7/24/2013, 1:40 am

This looks to be a nice site! But it doesn't address the water withholding issue.  Hmm, I'll keep searching.  You can google when do I withhold water from pumpkins, I'm getting lots of hits with many opinions....hmmm
 
http://www.pumpkinnook.com/growing.htm


Last edited by llama momma on 7/24/2013, 2:07 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post  TxGramma on 7/24/2013, 1:44 am

Yes you should cut back on watering for the last week or so before you harvest so that it will concentrate the sweetness but keep an eye on your vines and don't let them wilt/die and then resume watering schedule after you harvest if there is still more small fruit on the vine that you want to continue growing. Here are some links that should help you out.

GROWING PUMPKINS
Video-How to harvest pumpkins

GROWING WATERMELONS
Watermelon
Video-How to tell if a watermelon is ripe

GROWING CANTALOUPE AND HONEYDEW MELONS
Cantaloupe
Video-How to tell when your homegrown cantaloupes are ripe

Hope this helps!!!


Last edited by TxGramma on 7/24/2013, 1:46 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Adding a link)
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Post  grownsunshine on 7/24/2013, 9:25 am

Thank you both!!! Smile
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Post  sanderson on 10/30/2016, 9:36 pm

On Facebook today. I didn't know that Halloween pumpkins aren't good for pies. http://foodtank.com/news/2016/10/how-does-it-grow-tells-the-truth-about-pumpkins

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