Pumpkin leaves losing color, turning white

JLNealeAugust 26, 2013

Hi there! This is my first time growing much of anything, and I'm so excited to have even made it this far.

I have 3 Baby Bear pumpkin plants which I've just transplanted to this tub. I'm hoping it's just because they needed more space, which they now have, but one of the 3 plants in here seems to have a problem. The leaves are losing all their color. There doesn't seem to be any sort of residue to wipe away, it's just bleaching out and feeling very wilty/droopy. There are a couple spots on other leaves that do look like mildew (and I've just today sprayed a baking soda mix that my mom told me to do- fingers crossed it works). But this is just a retraction of color happening, and quickly. It seems to only be happening to one of the 3 plants.

Does anyone know what's going on and if I should try to pull this plant out and just keep the other two? I worry that I would damage the roots of my other ones (I planted the seeds 3 inches apart in a circle, as instructed by seed packet, and that's about how far apart they remain).

Also, a stem cracked in transplant on this same plant- do I cut that leaf off or band-aid it?

PS- It is getting plenty of bright sun, and I only water the soil, making sure the leaves never touch water (unless it rains). I have Organic Choice Potting Mix from Miracle Gro and have yet to "feed" it, as I've been nervous about throwing of the pH.

Thank you so much for any help you can offer!

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seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

Pumpkins, Three of them, In a small pot ? This time of the year ? In NY?
I don't think it will do any good. But it you want to have fun with it, just pinch off the one that is not doing well. Two plants are way too many in that pot anyway.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 6:25AM
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One of the leaves shows the opposite of interveinal chlorosis, that is the vein itself is losing color. It is likely a sign of nutrient deficiency.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 11:37PM
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Ooh, interesting, @ceth_k. Is there a specific product I can buy to feed it? I've been warned off about the basic Miracle Gro formulas. Bone Meal or plain compost has been recomended, but I can't seem to find it near me. I've seen tomato plant food, Osmocote, African Violet formula, Orchid formula..... Any ideas?

    Bookmark   August 28, 2013 at 2:39PM
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Seysonn has a really good point. Several, actually. You've got too many plants in a pot that can maybe support one pumpkin plant alone ... and it's too late in the season to expect any successful fruits from a plant that appears not to have flowered yet. Personally, I wouldn't waste fertilizer on it. I don't mean to rain on your parade, just don't want you to be really disappointed later this fall. :) If you decide to plow ahead with this pot, I suggest choosing the strongest looking plant and clipping the other two out at soil-level. Then you don't have to worry about damaging any roots. Just an idea. Good luck!

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 2:41AM
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Dr. Earth is really good. I have used Dr. Earth fish meal and I've seen some nice growth. My pumpkins seem to love it.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 5:42AM
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Thanks for the tips. Will let you know how it goes.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2013 at 2:02PM
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Yeah, you will have to keep us posted :)! I am interested in growing baby bear pumpkins next year and wonder how they taste.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2013 at 6:50AM
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Lisa.from.CO(5 - CO)

Thanks for posting, JLNeale! I have't seen much on the subject of Baby Bear's. I'm a newbie gardener here! I planted 4 plants in a 4'x8' bed this year, alongside a couple cucumber plants (won't be making that mistake again! lol -- too much competition, among other problems). I agree with everyone else that pumpkin plants need some space. You should see how much these guys have taken over that area of my backyard!! I have about 10 pumpkins set now, and a few are almost ready to be picked. I had to battle really bad PM after the vines were really big (ugh!). Anyways..I can't wait to see how the pumpkins taste. I read they are great for roasting and pureeing! Hoping your plants start producing! They really grow quickly once they do! :)

    Bookmark   September 3, 2013 at 11:17AM
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