Growing giant pumpkins again this year!

Closeup of giant pumpkin-Isn’t she beautiful?!

This year I’m going to attempt growing giant pumpkins again. Back in 2011 I grew a New Mexico state record of 448 lb pumpkin. That’s not big as far as giant pumpkins goes but it was big enough back then to set a New Mexico state record. Since then the record has been shattered with a pumpkin grown in Albuquerque over 900 lbs.

My best giant pumpkin for 2012-‘ORANGE CRUSH’-385 lbs

I don’t think I can grow a bigger pumpkin than that one up here in Santa Fe at 7000 feet high with such a short season, but I’m going to go for a personal best. I have tried since 2011 to grow these behemoths again but to no success.

This was back in 2008-my first year of growing giant pumpkins

I once asked a giant pumpkin grower friend of mine from Colorado how he got 2 Colorado giant pumpkin state records and he said it took him 20 years to get it twice. If it was easy he said, you could get it every time but it is not easy to grow giant pumpkins.

My best pumpkin for 2011-set a NM State Record at 448 lbs

They require a lot of time, work and water to get them big. You must baby them. You must coddle them. I think this will be a good year to try giant pumpkins again as I’m spending more time at home.

Here are the pumpkin plants I just germinated for 2020. The seeds came from a 2009 lb pumpkin! Let’s see what happens this year! I hope this year will produce a big beautiful pumpkin!

17 comments on “Growing giant pumpkins again this year!

  1. Michael Schneider says:

    Sounds fun but how much water and do you eat the pumpkins or use it as compost?

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    • They take about 5 to 25 gallons a day depending whether it is in the beginning when they are small or later in the season when they are large. Yes we eat the giant pumpkin, give it to friends who want to cook with it and the rest goes to the Food Depot and Kitchen Angels who fix food for the housebound. (Hey that’s all of us now!). Contrary to what some say, it is delicious.

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  2. Pamela Grob says:

    Good luck with your pumpkin crop.

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  3. tonytomeo says:

    Have you heard of the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival? I went to school with the Pumpkin Queen 1985! There were not so many giant pumpkins at the festival back then. A now deceased friend of mine grew giant pumpkins in Colorado Springs years ago. The picture I used for his obituary was him with one of his pumpkins.

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    • Is your friend Barry Todd from Colorado? He was my mentor. He was the nicest guy sharing everything about giant pumpkin growing. And of course I have heard of Half Moon Bay pumpkin Festival. So many great pumpkins there every year.

      Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        No, but he also had two first names, David Paul. He did not grow more giant pumpkins after coming to California.
        I really do not hear much about the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival anymore. Years ago, it, and the Gilroy Garlic Festival, were the two big festivals in the region. Now, many towns have similar festivals, even if they need to make up some excuse for it. Los Gatos had a Strawberry Festival for a while, but strawberries were never commercially grown there.

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      • But Half Moon Bay contest always draws the biggest pumpkin growers as the contest pays the biggest bucks to the winners.

        Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        So, people come from other regions to compete?! I have really been out of the mix.

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      • Yes! Because it is one of the highest paying contests in the US, many people drive across the country with their giant pumpkins to be in it. Other contests are not so wealthy in prize money.

        Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        So they could earn enough to pay for the trip? It can not be cheap to transport those pumpkins safely.

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      • Earn enough? Last years winner there at Half Moon Bay earned $15,000 for the biggest pumpkin and that’s just one contest they can take it to. Most pumpkin growers have trucks and trailers to drag their pumpkin across the country so gas, food and lodging are the only things they have to pay for-other than the cost to grow these behemoths. Growing big pumpkins can be very profitable plus the sponsorships they get can be very profitable too and they sell their seeds for big money too. Many take them all over the country to see if they will win some prize money. And other pumpkins that are not first place can bring in good money too. You should go to it one of these years since you live over there! Go here for more info:

        https://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/local/giant-pumpkin-weigh-off-half-moon-bay/1962140/

        Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        Dang! That would be worth it for those who grow such pumpkins anyway. Wow! $15,000! That guy to the left in the first picture in the article is the older brother of one of my college roommates. I have not seen him since 1989!

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      • Yes $15,000 and that is just one Giant Pumpkin Weigh-Off. Many times they go to several, especially if they think it’s a big time winner. Can be a big business for exceptional giant pumpkin growers. The current world record is 2624 set in 2016. Held by a Belgium man. Wow-what I wouldn’t give to see one that big at a weigh-off!

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      • tonytomeo says:

        I could not use up a pumpkin worth that much. What on Earth happens to them afterward? Do they get eaten, or are they too bland? Even if they do get eaten, there is no way they could be eaten completely, unless, of course, they are shared with many people.

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      • I don’t know what others do but I have a pumpkin bash at work after being displayed for a while in the fall where everyone gets a chance to crack it open. Then we put the pumpkin meat in bags and the participants take it home to make pumpkin recipes. Contrary to what I have read, I love the flavor of the giant pumpkins. I use it in pumpkin soup and I cut pumpkin into pumpkin steaks. I then bread the ‘steaks’ and cook in a fry pan till soft and outside crispy. Then drizzle a little honey over the steaks and serve-delicious! If I can’t give it all away, I take it to our local food bank-nothing gets wasted.

        Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        One pumpkin would go a long way!
        My home in town was in a suburban neighborhood where there were no resident children, but MANY trick-or-treaters for Halloween. It was just that sort of neighborhood, where children were very safe, and there were plenty of doors to knock on. Although I loath Halloween, it was nice that our neighborhood was enjoyed in that manner. There were plenty of Jack-O’-lanterns, which I needed to collect and dispose of afterward. The toasty bits got discarded, but most got canned. I happen to like pumpkin. However, the white ones were rather bland. The big orange ones were probably not as good as the type that are grown to be eaten, but they were good enough for me.

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