So what is the most important thing for growing giant pumpkins?
Is it location?
Is it the seed used?
Is it which way the vine grows?
You could say yes to all of the above, but one of, if not the most important things to realise is the importance of the soil, and getting it right.
The Soil Food Web
To begin to understand how the soil can impact how your pumpkin can grow, in fact how anything grows, you need to learn about how beneficial good soil is.
The term soil food web is given to soil to describe the complexity of it. And how the soil itself is a whole food web.
One teaspoon of productive good soil can contain a mind boggling 100 million to 1 billion bacteria. While that figure does sound like an amazing amount, once you learn about how soil works, and how everything can interact with each other, you begin to understand how a figure like that can be used. And how important the soil is.
Changing the way you think
I have to admit, I thought growing things only consisted of having a place to plant, watering the plants, and using some fertiliser to promote growth. While those statements are somewhat true, they are not the only way of thinking of things.
Organic gardening is becoming a more common place way of gardening, and concepts used in this can be used in giant pumpkin growing, with good results. You can go fully organic, or use a combination of methods to achieve the result you are after.
One of the big things I learnt was the amount of damage applying fertiliser could do to the soil food web.
Where to learn about this?
There are a lot of resources on-line about this, and you only have to put it into Google to see how many results their are.
But if you are after a good all round book on the matter, then check out the video below, where I will show you what the book is, and cover a few things that are in it.
The next step
Now that you know a little bit more about how important good soil is, the next logical step is making sure your soil is in great condition. I’ll be covering this is later updates, so until then, I’m Sam, from Giant Pumpkins NZ.