Can pumpkins just hang over the side?

nancy_eastApril 30, 2009

I am new to SFG this year and have learned volumes from this forum just be lurking! I am now in need of some help with a question about pumpkin planting. I don't have the room in my bed to let them roam freely (I'm planting Small Sugar) and I don't need a large yield--honestly, I'm planting them to satisfy the curiousity of my 5-year-old son and to maybe get lucky and harvest 1 or 2 for baking! So my question is this: I have already allocated the space on my trellising for pumpkins and cucumbers and don't really have the space to include the pumpkins. Is it unreasonable to plant the pumpkin seeds in a square on the side of the south side of the bed and let the vine overhang the side of the bed wall and trail on the ground beside it? Is that just setting myself up for the vine breaking or other problems? I was thinking about laying down a tarp beside the bed so they could trail without being directly on the mulch (don't know why--just seemed like a good idea).

I guess I'm curious if the same question could be applied to summer squash and zucchini as well. I have alloted the recommended 9 sq. ft. per each plant but if they overtake that space, can they overhang the bed as well?

Thanks in advance!

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I'm certain this works with pumpkins because all the pumpkin patches I've ever been to just let 'em go. My only concern would be that they would seem to be more at risk of fungal stuff, but I think the tarp idea might put an end to that risk. Hopefully granny will chime in because she's got more info on that than I ever will. My experience with zucchini last year was that it grows a bit like a spider with sort of shortish branches. For me, trellising zucchini was a complete waste of time. Imagine taking a spider and putting all eight legs on a trellis, not so smart, eh? Maybe I just had a weird variety because Mel has great pics on his site of trellised zucch. I would trellis the squash. IMHO: long, viney plants make a lovely backdrop to the box. They look great and it makes them less likely to pick up fungal stuff.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 7:27PM
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Actually, Granny has never grown pumpkins! It's so easy and cheap to just buy it in a can. But this year, I am growing one hill of pumpkins, because Daphne (Daphne's Dandelions) sent me seed for small pie pumpkins. I had planned on putting it at the end of my indeterminate tomato bed and letting it grow over the side, but I'm having second thoughts about that. Now I've decided to plant it in a large container (one of those plastic milk crates, lined with landscape fabric or an old sheet...whatever), and let it sprawl. As with melons and winter squash, which I have grown, I'll just save up some coffee cans, bricks, flower pots, thick boards or whatever to set the pumpkins on to keep them from being in contact with the soil.


Here is a link that might be useful: Annie's Kitchen Garden

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 11:48PM
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engineeredgarden(7, nw Alabama)

Let 'em run out into the yard...they'll be fine.

I'm trellising my pumpkins this year, because....I trellis everything! Ha! Ain't that right Granny?


    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 12:07AM
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That's right, Poopy-head!

He just loves it when I call him that ;-) Don'tcha, EG?


Here is a link that might be useful: Annie's Kitchen Garden

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 1:06AM
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Dan Staley

You should be able to let that var. hang with a little support, no problem. We've been saving the mesh bags we get from grocery store produce for his purpose, as our melons get trellised (punkins we grow are too big for our trellises (trellisi?).


    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 10:08AM
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sinfonian(U8b A2 S5 SeaWA)

I just planted watermelon as Granny suggests above. My olan is to let them sprawl a bit. I love the idea of a brick to rest on. I can make that happen.

I'm trying not to get too excited about my experiments, hehe. Good ideas though!

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 10:59AM
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engineeredgarden(7, nw Alabama)

Granny - I'm such a lucky person, to have someone such as you frequently reminding me who I am. Thanks!


    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 5:12PM
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We let ours run the yard. Extending out several feet. Sometimes trying to invade other boxes. SO we have to re route them around. I told the kids " once the vines make it out to the road, (bout 20 feet away) we'll have to turn them around or cut em." j/k First time last year growing pumpkins. Made lots of delicious pumpkin bread. Froze some of them.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 7:27PM
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You got my interest. I think of pumpkins as being planted later in the summer. Help me, when can I plant pumpkins? I have a sfg, 1st time this year. I have cantaloupe and watermelon planted in two squares. I plan to let them go up a trellis. Talk to me about the pumpkin. I have room in my garden to put them in a 5 gal bucket or a large flower pot and let them trail over the back side of my garden. The garden drops over a bulkhead and goes down about three foot to another part of the yard. Would that also work better for the cantaloupe and watermelon?

    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 8:11PM
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Planting time for pumpkins will depend on where you are. In some areas (like here in central Texas, zone 8b), you get two planting opportunities a year - early season (March-April) and again for fall harvest (July planting). See the planting schedule below for Travis County:

In other areas with shorter growth seasons, you might only have one time window for pumpkin planting. You should be able to get planting time advice from your local county extension office, a good nursery, or a local gardening club or association.

I planted my pumpkins in the non-square foot portion of my garden, where (due to space limitations) they will be allowed to roam into the yard and among the other plants in the garden.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 10:17AM
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