Sunday, October 25, 2015

Clone of Plant that Grew 2008 Neptune

I transplanted the clone cuttings into pots this weekend.  All three of the cuttings rooted, but the plants don't look very healthy right now.  A little powdery mildew has shown up and the leaves don't look very happy right now.  I gave the plants some Eagle which should knock out the powdery mildew.  The next week will be important to see if the plant can root into the potting soil and survive the transplant shock.  I think by next weekend we will know if they will make it.

I gave the plants a little kelp and B-vitamins to help with the transplanting.  Also a touch of RAW Bloom that has mono potassium phosphate which will help some with the rooting.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

18% Heavy on the Scale! Great End to a Tough Pumpkin Season.

Yesterday I took my pumpkin to the Old Colorado City Giant Pumpkin Weigh-off.  I've never been to this event before and had heard good things and since my pumpkin was growing slow I figured I would give it as much time as possible to grow, as this is the last weigh-off of the season in Colorado.

To my pumpkin's credit it grew long.  Was still growing when I picked it and considering I thought I lost the pumpkin 75 days before when I had irrigation problems and it never did over 11 pounds a day after that and it had the biggest Dill Ring I've ever seen, I am amazed by that.

My pumpkin was estimating in the low 600s by the measurements, but ended up at 747 pounds.  Although that is about half of what I was hoping for this year, it as a lot heavier than I expected.  A pumpkin that goes 5-7% heavier than what the charts indicate in my book is very heavy pumpkin, but for this pumpkin to go 18% heavy is crazy.  My pumpkins typically, like most Colorado growers, go a little light.  A very nice suprise on the scales.

It makes me wonder now what this plant could have done if I didn't have all of the problems that I did.  When you look at the picuture above it isn't difficult to image how the lines of the pumpkin would be different.  This pumpkin grew on a side vine because I lost the main and then it got really jacked up by the water issues.  Would love to have another shot with this seed again.  I'm considering very strongly growing the seeds from this pumpkin next year.  I liked the 282 pollinator and this plant was the best looking plant I've ever had the first part of the season.  May give it another shot.

Now it is time to start prepping for next year.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Strong End to the Season

Typically a pumpkin will put on about 66% of its weight in the first half of its growing days (about 45-50 days) and then will put on the remainder of its weight in the last 45-50 days.  My 1985 Miller pumpkin put on about 12% more than the average of its weight in the 2nd half of the season.  That is partially a testament to how much it got screwed up during the irrigation issues, but I think it was also a long grower.  The pumpkin is now about 104 days old and the last I checked it was still growing.  Would really have liked to have grown this seed again to give it a fair shot at its potential.

About a month and a half ago I gave myself the goal of trying to get the pumpkin over 700lbs.  To me that is a really small pumpkin that I have in the patch, but I figured I wasn't going to have a big one so I would at least try to make it interesting.  700lbs at that time was going to be a stretch.  I thought 650 was the best chance I had, but it will be estimating just over 700lbs by this Friday.

I'm going to cut the pumpkin from the vine and take it to Colorado Springs weigh-off on Saturday.  Wish me luck!

Gave the pumpkin plant one final foliar dose of RAW Bloom on Tuesday.  Trying to squeeze out one more extra pound before the weigh-off.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Clone/Cuttings of Pumpkin Plant that Grew a 2,008 Pounder

Today I received in the mail a clone/cutting of a plant that grew a 2,008 pound pumpkin.  The plant is a 1730 Werner that Bill Neptune grew in 2014.  Former world record holder, Nick Harp got a clone of the plant that he grew this year and then I got a cutting sent in the mail today.

I've never grown a clone before.  If you have any tips, please let me know.  I went to one of the local grow stores (an advantage of growing in Denver) and got myself educated on cloning and got some rock wool and Clone X rooting agent to help get the plant rooted.  I'll then keep the plant under the lights all winter and then plant the pumpkin plant in the spring to use as a pollinator. Cloned plants I don't think can grow big pumpkins.

I wish more growers would do this.  It is a massive advantage to know what a pollinator can grow before pollination.  We would push the genetics much farther this way if more growers would grow clones and use them as pollinators.

Here is a video of the 2008 pumpkin:

Congrats to My Kids' 1st & 2nd Place Finishing in the Annual Giant Pumpkin Weigh-off

Each year we've had a pumpkin in the Arvada Festival of Scarecrows giant pumpkin weight.  My son and daughter took first and second place honors in the children's category.  I think this was the third year in a row that they pumpkins were bigger than everyone.  Great job guys!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Some Big Pumpkins in Colorado This Year

It is killing me that I missed out on some great weather this year.  Lots of big pumpkin at the weigh-offs in Colorado this fall.  Each weigh-off has had a pumpkin over 1,300 pounds with two weigh-offs having pumpkins over 1,400 pounds.  Some really good growers stepping up in Colorado this year.

Next week is my weigh-off.  I'll be lucky if I get to half of my goal for the season, but I get excited for the weigh-offs just the same. 

Tonight I gave the pumpkin plants a foliar application of TKO with a little calcium nitrate.  I'll probably give the plants one last application of fertilizer on Tuesday and then we will be done for this year and hope for the best.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Nick's Garden Center Giant Pumpkin Weigh-off

Nick's 6th annual great pumpkin weigh-off is this Saturday at 11:00 in Aurora.  See some pumpkins over 1,000 pounds with the potential for a new Colorado state record going to the scale.  Nick's is a great event with a lot of great activities for kids.