Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Tips for Giant Pumpkin Seed Starting

Soak the seed(s) in mildly warm water with a drop of seaweed (optional) and a little humic acid (optional) to help them germinate. After 3-4 hours of soaking transfer the seeds to lightly moistened paper towels that will be folded around the seeds and put into Ziploc bags. The Ziploc bags will then be placed at the back part of my computer where it is usually about 85 degrees. An ideal temperature for pumpkin seed starting is between 85 to 90 degrees. In 24 to 48 hours a little root will come out of the bottom of the seed and at that time I will transfer the seeds to my seed starting mixture in peat pots.

If you prefer, after soaking the seeds you can transfer the seed to a pot with a seed starting mixture rather than using the paper towel method.  The soil should be lightly moist and the pot should be in a warm place (80 degrees) to help germinate the seed.  the pointy part of the seed should be facing down as that is where the tap root will come out.

For my seed starting mixture I use 80% ProMix BX with some earth worm castings (optional) and some mycorrhizae (optional beneficial fungi) and Azos (optional beneficial bacteria). About 2-5 days  after putting the seeds in the pots they will start popping through the soil (can take up to 10 days if conditional aren't ideal). I put my pots in a closet with grow lights and a space heater in them so I can keep the plants at about 85 degrees. About two weeks later I'll plant them in the pumpkin patch inside hoop houses.  Anytime the weather is nice and not windy I'll put the plants outdoors so they can get sun.  No grow lights will do as well as the sun.

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