Well…I’m calling it, guys. Pumpkin patch time of death: sometime in July. Maybe late June. I’m not really sure. I just know that after a month of trying to revive my little pumpkin babies…it’s a goner.
See, this is why I told myself it was all going to go to hell in a handbasket in that first post. So I wouldn’t be so disappointed when it actually did.
Here is the most recent look at my pumpkin patch:
Sad, right? An expert would probably tell me all the things I did wrong.
My first turn into a dead pumpkin patch, or so I thought, was not being around the week my blossoms finally opened. You’ll remember from my first post, I planted this in my parents’ backyard since I have no outdoor space. I had confidence their yard have enough flowers and bees visiting that they would easily find my pumpkins and pollinate for me.
That also happened right around Memorial Day when no one was at the house for nearly a week – meaning no one could have intervened and self-pollinated instead.
Even with no pollinated blossoms, I hoped my plants would carry on and the next round of blossoms would give me that opportunity to self-pollinate.
Instead, they just took a turn for the worst.
At that point, I worried we had planted them in too shady a spot. Then I thought maybe the hot Texas summer and sudden lack of rain, despite watering them, but doing them in. I spent a lot of time Googling pumpkin pests and plant diseases, swapping ideas with my dad (my unofficial master gardener in this project) and wondering where we went wrong.
In the end, I think my issue was crowding.
Pumpkins like to have space to spread out, and planting too many plants together without thinning them out can cause the plants to compete for nutrients in the soil.
I think that’s exactly what happened to mine.
That’s four Big Max plants thriving early on – and probably at the point where I should have separated them a bit.
What happens next
For now, I’m letting my pumpkin patch live out its days as a failed experiment. We’ll see if anything comes of it. I do still have some seeds tucked away, and I’m half-tempted to plant one or two in a pot and see what happens. That will have to wait until mid-August, however, meaning I definitely wouldn’t have full grown pumpkins in time for October 31st. (The least of my worries now!)
So for now…learn from my mistake and don’t crowd your pumpkins!
Rest in peace, spooky little pumpkin patch. We’ll try again next year.
^^ That’s the ghost of my pumpkin patch, moving on to the other side. See? At least I can have a sense of humor about it…
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