Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Planted The Pumpkin Plants!

Hey everyone,

Pumpkin growing season has officially started! Today my two daughters and I planted the first two plants! We started them 3 weeks ago and they were getting quite big so it was definitely time to start.

I have to admit that I have failed every time I have tried growing pumpkins. But every time I failed I realized what I did wrong and come up with a way to do it better. So hopefully this year things work out better.

The first problem I had years ago was the plants not getting enough water. Also when I tried to water them the soil eroded away exposing the roots. So since pumpkins need lots of water I built boxes to contain the soil and I installed plumbing. I connected 2 lengths of ½” PVC pipe with a 45° elbow connector. Then I drilled lots of holes in bottom of the “L”. The idea is to fill the pipe so that the water gets directly to the roots.

Another problem I’ve had is that pumpkins need a long growing season and Alberta isn’t ideal. So in order to get decent sized pumpkins I needed to start them inside. Also there is a frost risk even throughout May so I built a makeshift greenhouse. I pounded 4 stakes in around the plant and wrapped plastic around them. This should keep the heat and moisture in and cause a greenhouse effect. But they still may freeze at night.

So as you can see I put some thought into this. Hopefully all turns out well. Just incase the plants that I put in today die because of frost I have more started inside. My plan is to plant more throughout the week.

I have also been mindful about teaching the kids every step along the way. Growing a garden and caring for plants is a sacred thing that our society unwisely no longer values. It is a human heritage to grow food and pass that knowledge on to the next generation. I hope my kids remember the things I show them so that they can have the joy and satisfaction of growing things when they are adults.

A special thanks to my neighbor Frank for letting me commandeer his back yard for this. We live in a new part of Red Deer and he hasn’t seeded his back yard yet. So he is ok with me putting in a pumpkin patch.

By the way and call me crazy, but I am seriously excited about the possibility of being allowed to have urban chickens in Red Deer. If it gets approved I will fence off underneath my deck and build a hen house! Fresh eggs everyday! Heres an interesting blog I found about Urban Chickens in Red Deer, its worth a read if you're interested.


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I want to hear from you. Please comment on this blog.

What do you think about my pumpkin growing operation?

Have you grown pumpkins before? Do you have any tips? I greatly appreciate any you may have!

What do you think about urban chickens in Red Deer? Would you have a backyard coup?