Growing Zumpkins

john(CA)June 23, 2005

Last year a grew a few pumpkin plants, and managed to get two pumpkis weighing ~30 and~70 lbs. This year, I have grown three new plants from the seeds I took from the 70 lb fruit.

These three plants are just starting to show their fruit below new female flowers now. Two of these plants are showing normal, yellowish fruit like my plants last year had done -BUT one plant, the biggest, is showing little GREEN fruit. In addition, this plant also has somewhat different shaped leaves.

Now I read that pumpkins can crossbreed with a number of different squashes as well as cucumbers or zuchinni... the thing is, I only grew pumpkins last year, so if there was some pollen from another species it must have come from somebody elses garden.

So I guess I have a Zumpkin on my hands. Just wondering if anyone has grown one of thes before, and what it's like.

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Rosa(4ish CO Rockie)

Pumpkins do not cross with cukes (Cucumis savatis). However, pumpkins are botanicallly either Curcubita maxima or C. pepo so those pumpkins that are C. pepo will cross with zukes.
Isolation distances are 1/2 mile for different varieties of the same species. So yes, a neighbor up to 1/2 mile away growing zukes could have been the culprit.
You wil probably not like your zumpkin in the least.
In the future hand pollination will be necessary if you care to save pure seed.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 9:05AM
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booberry85(5)

I may be joining you in the zumpkin experiment. I had some volunteers come up this year in a row that was not doing well. So I left them. I had acorn squash and pumpkins planted there last year. I also grew zucchinis in another row. So anything goes with the volunteers! I am not a die hard gardener. If it grows and it's edible it stays regardless of whether I planted it or not.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 5:20PM
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