This week has seen the appearance of both male and female flowers on the giant pumpkin plant. Males can appear first.

How do you tell them apart?

The female flower has a small ball at the base. This is a baby pumpkin waiting to be pollinated.

Very Young Female Giant Pumpkin Flower Forming

The male flower has no pumpkin at the base. They can appear before the females and also open first. Don’t panic if this happens.

Male Giant Pumpkin Flower

Eventually you will end up with both opening at the same time. Then it’s everyone’s favourite time of the pumpkin calendar, pollination. By hand which is better. Or letting the bees do their thing.

When Did I Pollinate Last Year?

Checking my notes I pollinated around the 7th of January last year. I’m looking to do it a lot earlier this season.

Taking notes during the growing season is important. Milestones, application of products and growth are the key areas. This data allows you to compare seasons and work out what is working for you.

I have a free pumpkin tracking sheet you can get here. Available in PDF and Excel. Feel free to share or edit.

Training Vines

Due to not having much soil in the tiny pumpkin patch, bamboo stakes don’t really work for training the vine.

Giant Pumpkin Vine and Tendrils Reaching Out

I was using some paving stones I had. Then I thought why not use these garden gnomes that keep on turning up.

Garden Gnome Used to Help Train Giant Pumpkin Vine

I’m still hoping to turn the vine around more and get more length in it. I can’t bury vines like a normal grower. So will be putting bags of compost down to bury the vines into.

Leaf was weird Looking

I was going to take a photo of a couple of the leaves looking strange. Not sure if the plant was stressed, too much nutrients or what. But the soft wet looking spots cleared up and the leaves are OK now. The first leaves are getting hammered by the sun.

Giant Pumpkin Plant Growing in a Tiny Pumpkin Patch

When I look at a shot of the tiny pumpkin patch, I wish I was growing in a bigger better more normal pumpkin patch.

Miniature Pumpkins

These are growing well. I did think I was going to move the two pots. But with so much growth, they can stay put.

Miniature Pumpkins Grown in Large Pots Miniature Pumpkin Vine up Against Wall

The ones out the front are growing good also. I’m looking forward to a lot of miniature pumpkins this season.

Miniature Pumpkins in Small Garden

How’s Your Season Going?

If you are a grower in the Southern Hemisphere, and want to see how other growers are doing. Join the Southern Hemisphere Giant Pumpkin Growers group on Facebook.

We check in every Sunday and share photos of what our plants are up to. It’s an ideal place to ask your giant pumpkin questions.

Next blog post I’ll fill you in on the slight drama that has been my watering plan for this season.